Pappardelle Bolognese

Pappardelle Bolognese is a classic Italian dish that has always just stuck with me.  I mean, whats better than thick sheets of noodles with a meaty, hearty sauce thats been cooked all day?! Making your own vegan pasta from scratch is also a whole lot easier than you think, but it tastes just like the real thing and the texture is unbeatable.  Unfortunately the recipe we’re posting today is not gluten free, BUT you can modify it to be gluten free by using the Bob’s Red Mill 1:1 Gluten Free Baking Flour.  Buying this flour is very important, because it’s pre mixed so you can substitute the same amount in your normal recipe, and its the only gluten free flour I’ve found that doesn’t completely dry out either. For this recipe, we are replacing the ground meat with black lentils in the sauce, and the eggs in the pasta with silken tofu.

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First you’ll need to finely dice your onion & carrot, and mince your garlic.  Now some bolognese sauces call for celery as well, but this is just how my family always made it, so I chose to omit it.  But by all means, if you’re a fan of celery as well, just add the same amount of celery as you did carrot.  Start by cooking down your onion and carrot in olive oil, with a bit of salt and pepper.  Once they’ve wilted down and released some juices (about 5-7 minutes of medium heat), add in your garlic and sautee for another minute or so just until fragrant.

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Once your onion, carrot, and garlic are ready, you can add in your cooked black lentils.  I used canned black lentils for this, just because its faster and easier, so just give them a quick drain / rinse before using.  If you’re choosing to cook your own, make sure you drain them of any excess liquid before transferring to the pot.  Add them in, and cook over medium heat for about 3-4 minutes.  Once they’ve incorporated with the sauce, add in your fresh oregano and basil, and stir to combine.

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Once your herbs are mixed in, add your almond milk & cook down over medium – low heat for about a half hour until the milk has reduced by half.  Once your milk has completely reduced, add your wine & do the same thing, cooking it over medium – low heat for about a half hour until the liquid has reduced by half.  This part seems tedious, but really adds an intense depth of flavor to the sauce, and helps the sauce become a lot creamier at the end result.

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Once your liquids have reduced, take your whole tomatoes, throw them in the blender and blend until smooth.  It’s very important you do this step, instead of buying tomato puree, because it adds a fresher flavor than the puree does.  Add your fresh made tomato puree, and your crushed tomatoes to the pot and allow to cook for 4-5 hours over low heat (without a lid) or until the sauce is thick and hearty.  Trust me, you’ll know when its done.

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For your pasta dough, add your semolina flour, olive oil, water, salt, and silken tofu to the food processor and pulse to combine.  You want it to hold together when you press the mixture together.  Once its done, lightly flour your surface with bread flour, and knead your dough out for about 5-10 minutes.  The more you knead your dough, the better it will turn out because it fully incorporates the ingredients as well as removing any air pockets hiding in the dough.  Once its done, wrap in plastic wrap and place into the fridge for at least a half hour, but up to 24 hours.  When you’re ready to make the actual pasta, cut the dough ball into 4 sections so that its easier to work with.  Roll your dough out into a longer thinner section, and run it through a pasta maker, going through every layer until you get to level 5.  You can also roll it out by hand, just getting it down to about an 1/8″ thick.  You can then cut it into whatever size pasta you’d like at that point!  I chose to do pappardelle because I like having those thick noodles with the sauce, but really, whatever your preference is fine!  Toss your fresh cut pasta in some bread flour to prevent sticking, and place on a baking sheet until ready to use.  Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and then add your pasta, cooking for about 2-3 minutes, thats really all you need to cook this pasta since its not dried and doesn’t have to be re hydrated like your typical boxed pasta.  Drain, and plate with your sauce!  You can also make some quick parmesan cheese by blitzing some dry raw cashews (not soaked) in the blender with some salt, nutritional yeast, and garlic powder to taste!

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PAPPARDELLE

  • 6 ounces silken tofu
  • 3 cups semolina flour
  • 1.5 tbs + 1.5 tsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1.5 tbs water
  • salt to taste
  • bread flour for dusting
  1. Put all ingredients, except dusting flour, into the bowl of a food processor.  Process the mixture until it forms a ball.  Remove the dough from the processor, place it on a lightly floured work surface, kneed for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic.  Cover with plastic wrap, and rest in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. 
  2. Cut the pasta dough into quarters.  One section at a time, roll out using a pasta machine until about level 5. Be sure to dust frequently with bread flour to prevent the dough from sticking. 
  3. Roll the pasta sheets up and cut into pappardelle, about 3/4” inch wide. Separate pasta & dust with flour.
  4. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil, and cook pasta for about 2-3 minutes, drain, toss with the sauce. 

BOLOGNESE

  • 1 tbs butter
  • 1 tbs salt
  • 1 cup diced onion
  • 1 cup diced carrots
  • 5 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 cups brown lentils
  • 3 tbs fresh oregano
  • 4 tbs fresh basil
  • 4 tbs fresh parsley
  • 1 cup almond milk 
  • 1 1/2 cups white wine
  • 1 28 oz can crushed tomatoes
  • 1 28 oz can whole tomatoes, pureed in blender
  • 4 tbs tomato paste
  1. Heat butter in a large pot over medium – low heat.  Add the salt, onion, and carrots and sauté for 5 minutes, or until soft and golden.  Add the garlic, saute for 30 seconds.  Add the cooked lentils & oregano, cook and break up the lentils as you go.  About 7-10 minutes.  After this step, add in your tomato paste and cook out for 2-3 minutes. 
  2. Add the milk.  Increase the heat to medium-high and bring it to a boil, then reduce the heat so that it maintains a gentle boil.  Cook the milk down for 20-30 minutes. 
  3. Add the wine.  Again, increase the heat to bring to a boil, and then lower the heat to maintain a simmer.  Cook the wine down for 20-30 minutes.
  4. Add the pureed tomatoes and crushed tomatoes.  Bring to a simmer and then lower the heat so that the sauce is just occasionally bubbling.  At this point you can leave it on the stove on very low, simmer the sauce for 4-5 hours. 

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