Annabel’s Bolognese

tequila bolognese

I cook Spaghetti Bolognese quite a lot as it is a family favourite. It was a long standing joke in my family that my mum’s Bolognese sauce was never the same twice, it varied week by week! I’m a little bit like this because I vary the ingredients depending on what I’ve got in the fridge, sometimes beef mince, or pork mince, or turkey mince, or a combination! Various vegetables get chopped up small and thrown in, a little bit of this and that, whatever needs using up.

I like to think that Annabel Karmel cooks like this, opening the fridge and getting inspiration from whatever’s inside! However, I suspect she is a little more organised and when I have the time to shop in advance for the ingredients, I love to make Annabel’s Bolognese. I love the way she incorporates loads of vegetables so that unsuspecting children (and adults!) can get more than their fair share of ┬átheir “five a day”. I’ve adapted this recipe slightly as my kids are older and don’t need their vegetables to be pureed.

Ingredients: Serves 4

3 tbsp olive oil

1 onion, chopped fine

1 garlic clove, crushed

1 carrot, chopped fine

100g mushrooms, chopped fine

250g minced beef/pork/turkey/combo

1 beef stock cube, dissolved in 1/2 pint hot water

1 tin chopped tomatoes

1 tbsp tomato ketchup

1/2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce

1 tsp brown sugar

1/2 tsp dried oregano

1 bay leaf

200g spaghetti


  1. Heat the oil and fry the onion for 2 minutes, add the garlic, then the carrots and mushrooms. Fry for 2 minutes.
  2. Add the beef (or whatever mince you are using) and stir until browned, about 7-8 minutes.
  3. Add the stock, tomatoes, ketchup, Worcestershire sauce, sugar, oregano and bay leaf. Stir to combine and simmer, covered, for about 30 minutes. Remove the bay leaf and season to taste.
  4. Cook the spaghetti according to the packet instructions, drain and serve with the Bolognese sauce.

You can add any unused vegetables you may have in the fridge such as peppers, courgettes, leeks etc. The more the merrier! You can also add puy lentils which are quite meaty in themselves.

If you make a double batch of this sauce you could add a tin of chilli beans (Asda sell a good one) and have chilli con carne the next night, 2 meals in one !

This recipe is taken from Annabel Karmel’s 100 Family Meals, available from Amazon;



My name is Caroline Sutton and I'm a wife and mother of 3 children, passionate about food, keeping me and my family healthy, gorgeous interiors and shopping! I have a degree in Biochemistry and Pharmacology and continue to be interested in the science behind diet and drugs. I also have a Diploma and City and Guilds in Interior Design and for the last 17 years have run a property company which develops, redevelops and manages rental properties: Sunlight Properties Ltd.

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