Barcelona, Comfort Food, Fresh Produce, Pasta

Rigatoni bolognese: a comfort food favorite

Rigatoni and bolognese sauce, a comfort food favorite of my childhood❤️

A photo posted by Joanne (@possiblyjoanne) on

It’s the holidays and I’m two days shy of getting home, finally! I can’t wait to be spoiled and pampered by my family for a few days. To me, it’s like heaven just to think about it! But, in the meantime, I have to spoil myself with one of my favorite dishes from my childhood: rigatoni bolognese.

My mom used to make this a lot when I was young and feeling down; something about the protein and iron in the bolognese sauce would lift me up, she would say. Something I love about this bolognese is that it’s also really easy to make. You can also store the bolognese in the freezer, this way you can have it in the freezer you just have to heat it up and boil pasta. Pretty handy, huh

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This recipe yields two and this is what you’ll need.

  • 100 gr of minced beef meat
  • 1 carrot
  • 3 cloves of garlic
  • 1 bay leaf
  • half a medium onion
  • one handful of parsley
  • 500 gr to crushed tomato
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • one pinch or sugar
  • 180 gr of rigatoni (90 grams per person)

Method:

For the rigatoni: Boil some water for the pasta for about 15 minutes. Once you’re ready to add the rigatoni add some salt and boil it away.

For the bolognese: Cut up the onion into small pieces, the carrot into halves. Sautee the onion and carrot in olive oil with the bay leaf.

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Add the minced beef meat, sautee it with the onion, carrot and bay leaf until it’s slightly brown. Then add the crushed tomato and let it simmer for about 15 to 20 minutes, at medium-low heat. Taste, taste, taste. Add a pinch of salt and pepper. If it’s too acidic add a pinch of sugar to balance it out. Taste again and adjust the balance of the salt to your own liking.

Top with parsley and parmesan cheese and there you have it! Rigatoni bolognese!

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Barcelona, Fresh Produce

Get Cosy with This Bowl of Chilli con Carne

It’s raining, it’s pouring, the old man is snoring! ♫♫♫

I think there’s a monsoon outside. I feel like I’m in Vietnam and not in Barcelona, it’s raining so much today and for some reason that nursery rhyme can’t get out of my head. I feel like a child trapped inside my home although I’m keeping it cosy listening to Otis Redding while I write this. I blame the rain. It makes me nostalgic and kind of soulful too.

Something that never fails to make me feel better when I’m gloomy and nostalgic is definitely comfort food. Oh yeah. For me, there are only but a few things better than getting cosy with a tasty bowl of food that just makes you feel amazing. Ramen soup is definitely number one on my list. When I was a kid it was probably one of the first foods I learned to ‘modify’. By “modifying” I mean adding soy sauce and scallions, by the way. Little by little as I grew up I learned how to make different versions (or modifications) of comforting dishes. This changed as I got older. When I was old enough to be left alone at home with my older brother, I had to make food for both of us, I’d modify Chef Boyardee’s raviolis by adding extra veg and cheese. Then when I was a teenager my dad only liked the spaghetti’s I made, which was a big deal ’cause it kind of offended my mom. After that, when my friends and I would have movie nights it was left to me to make mac and cheeses (I used to add like 4 kinds) for everyone. Anyway, I’m rambling.

This post isn’t completely about modifying dishes or recipes. It’s about the sense of comfort you get when you eat a bowl of happy. It can be a bowl of cereal first thing in the morning, half a sleep. Or if you’re an açai bowl kind of person, well that. That feeling of cosy you get inside on a cold, rainy day when you have a nice cup of tea and curl up with a book you happen to be obsessed with. That’s why I decided to make chilli. It’s something I’ve made before and when I have left overs I modify it into a hefty hangover cure breakfast. This time, I added corn and coffee.

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