Turkey Bolognese with Organic Tomatoes

With plenty of organic tomatoes waiting to be used, turkey Bolognese was an obvious option for an easy, one pot recipe. In my own favourite version of Bolognese sauce grated carrots are added to balance some acidity from tomatoes and provide extra vegetable mass in this essentially meat dish. I have also found that grated carrots give better taste to the sauce, compared to sliced or chopped carrots. They help to achieve slightly different, thicker texture of the sauce, which is more practical when serving the dish with steamed vegetables or raw zuchhini noodles. The list of ingredients is short and simple. This time I did not even use my favourite fermented preserve and relied on mild chilli, garlic and fresh thyme to add flavour.

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Ingredients:

  • 500g turkey mince
  • 2 onions, or 1 onion and 1 leek
  • 4 carrots
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 semi-hot chilli with seeds
  • 4-5 fresh thyme sticks
  • 2 table spoons of olive oil
  • fresh tomatoes, approximately 600-700g
  • salt and black pepper to taste

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Preparation:

  • wash tomatoes, make two superficial cuts in their skin
  • cover tomatoes with boiling water for 1 min
  • discard the water and peel the skin from tomatoes (step by step photos here)
  • cut, blend or simply squash tomatoes
  • peel and grate carrots
  • slice onion in semi-circles
  • heat olive oil in a deep casserole pan
  • add onions
  • gently fry them on medium heat for 3-5 min, season with salt and pepper
  • add garlic and chilli and cook them for 2-3 min
  • add turkey mince and fry it lightly working with a spoon to end up with small chunks of meat
  • add carrots, tomatoes and thyme, stir
  • use water or stock if tomatoes do not provide enough liquid to cover meat and vegetables
  • cook on low/medium heat simmering for 45-60 min, add seasoning if necessary

The dish can be stored refrigerated for 4-5 days, frozen in a big container or as individual portions in plastic zip-lock bags if more prolong storage is needed. It gets only tastier with storage and reheating. More vegetables can be added, eggplant is my next favourite on the list. With extra vegetables the dish can be served on its own.

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