It’s St. Patrick’s Day, but I am not wearing green. Nope. I’m at home with our pooches plugging away on my laptop without any threat of being pinched (ouch!), at least until Mark gets home. But, I do have a jade ring that I’ll slip on before he gets home to protect myself from any unexpected ouchy surprise…yep, just in case he’s feeling the need to pinch-celebrate the holiday later. Anyway, the greens that I’m thinking about today are the light green colors of zoodles, or zucchini noodles, and the dark green hues of soft green bell pepper chunks that you’ll find in almost every bite of this yummy and easy beef Bolognese.
As a newbie zoodle maker, I’ve armed myself with a handheld vegetable spiralizer and tried several different zucchini noodle recipes. Although most of these recipes turned out pretty good, my cooked zoodles always released too much water for me to pair with my precious beef Bolognese recipe.
Then, when I found and made this zucchini pasta recipe from blogger and book author Diane Comer, I finally found what I was looking for in terms of taste, texture, and minimal water release.
I could go on and on about how fabulous I think Diane Comer is, really. In fact, just reading the introduction from her new book gave me the ‘this is genius’ chills that made the itty-bitty hairs on my arms stand straight up, and I can’t wait to have a whole day off so I can devour her book in one sitting. She’s a phenomenal Christian woman and writer. She’s humble, she’s inspiring, and she’s an overcomer, all traits that I highly respect in a woman of God. Yep.
Make Yummy, Easy Beef Bolognese
To start the Bolognese, slice the mushrooms and chop up the Cajun trinity of bell peppers, onions, and celery.
Slide the trinity into a cast iron Dutch oven or other large pot, and cook down with butter or olive oil for about 5 minutes. Add ground beef, mushrooms, SP&C to taste, and half of the dried basil and dried parsley to the pot. When the ground beef is almost browned, add the minced garlic and cook until the beef is browned. Drain the fat, and return the beef mixture to the pot.
Add tomato sauce, SP&C to taste, and more dried basil and dried parsley to the pot.
Simmer for 45 minutes. Serve over zoodles or your choice of pasta.
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- 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil
- 1 medium onion, chopped
- 1 green bell pepper, chopped
- 2 stalks celery, chopped
- 4 to 6 cloves garlic, minced
- 2 tablespoons dried basil, divided
- 2 tablespoons dried parsley, divided
- salt, pepper, and cayenne pepper to taste
- ½ cup button or baby Bella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
- 1½ pounds ground beef
- 2½ cups gluten free tomato sauce
- fresh parsley for garnish, optional
- crumbled Parmesan cheese, optional
- Zoodles or the pasta of your choice
- Cook onion, bell pepper, and celery in butter or olive oil for about 5 minutes.
- Add ground beef, mushrooms, SP&C to taste, half of the dried basil and half of the dried parsley to the Dutch oven. Cook for about 5 minutes, or until beef is almost browned and mushrooms darken.
- Add minced garlic, cook until beef is browned. Drain fat from mixture and return mixture to the pot.
- Add tomato sauce, more SP&C to taste, and the rest of the dried basil and parsley. If you have fresh herbs, add the herbs during the last 15 minutes of cooking time.
- Simmer for 45 minutes. Serve over zoodles or the pasta of your choice. Garnish with fresh parsley, and top each individual serving with crumbled Parmesan cheese, if desired.