The BEST Secret Ingredient Bolognese With Gnocchi!
For some, bolognese may bring back memories of childhood dinners, or university years when it was the only half impressive meal you could cook outside of beans on toast or ramen noodles.
My friends and family would be the first people to tell you that I go crazy for unique, wacky dishes full of ingredients you may not immediately consider putting together. That I’m rarely found eating something where someone doesn’t make a comment like “What’s that green stuff?… Cavolo Nero? I’ve never heard of it. What’s wrong with lettuce!’
But in spite of all this, the classic bolognese is one of my ALL TIME FAVOURITES.
There’s something so comforting and satisfying about it. That sauce; so herby, tomatoey, rich, sexy, meaty… Ahh.
Needless to say, I like to eat bolognese quiiiite a lot. I tend to stick with the same base recipe and add in cheeky little additions each time I make it, like red wine, or chipotle paste, or…
Yes, that’s right. The good old love it or hate it spread that has divided toast eaters for decades has made it into my bolognese recipe. And I’m pretty certain you’re going to LOVE it.
I was surprised to find that marmite is actually pretty good for you, as sandwich spreads go. It’s full of thiamin (B1), riboflavin (B2), niacin (B3), B12 and folic acid. Vitamin B1 and B12 are both important for maintaining a healthy nervous system, whilst B2 is important for energy production in the body, B3 can help lower cholesterol and folic acid is important for cell growth and repair- particularly in infancy and pregnancy. And did I mention it’s gluten free?? Eat yo’ marmite, people.
Did you see my Vegan Puff Pastry Twists with Marmite and Tahini? If you too love marmite, you’ll LOVE this tasty snack!
It has also recently come to my attention that there is a marmite cookbook. A MARMITE COOKBOOK. As if their marmite coated cashew nuts weren’t enough of a blessing. I don’t know about you, but that’s definitely going on this years birthday wishlist.
Now, this couldn’t be easier. It takes less than half an hour to whip up from start to finish and is perfect served with pretty much everything. I usually have it with gnocchi or polenta, but it would also work wonderfully with any type of pasta (duh), rice, kamut, quinoa, bulgar wheat… the list goes on!.
That’s enough wittering on for now. I need to go and make this immediately. Race you to the kitchen!
- 250g 5% fat lean beef mince
- 100g cavolo nero, roughly chopped
- 100g courgette, diced
- 200g chestnut mushrooms, sliced
- 200g herby tinned tomatoes or passata
- 1 ham stock cube, dissolved in 400ml water
- 20g marmite
- 2 garlic cloves, crushed
- 2tsp smoked paprika
- 2tsp dried basil
- 1tsp oregano
- 1/2tsp chilli flakes (optional)
- 250g gnocchi
- 2tsp rapeseed oil
- Heat the oil in a frying pan over a medium heat, then add in the beef mince, courgette and paprika. Mix well so that the beef is evenly coated in the paprika. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the mince and courgette are beginning to brown.
- Next add in the chestnut mushrooms, followed by the cavolo nero. Cook for about 2 minutes until the mushrooms have started to take on a golden colour.
- Pour in your stock, chopped tomatoes/passata and marmite. Mix well, then add in your crushed garlic (I use a garlic crusher for this), dried basil, oregano and chilli flakes (if using).
- Leave to simmer on a medium heat whilst you cook your gnocchi. For this, bring a pan of water to the boil. Once the surface begins to bubble, gently pour the gnocchi into the pan and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until they float to the surface.
- Drain the gnocchi and gently stir into the bolognese, which should now have reached a thick, rich consistency.
- Protein: 39g
- Carbohydrate: 49g
- Fat: 7.5g
- DISCLAIMER: All macronutrient totals are accurately calculated based on the specific products I used. These totals may vary slightly depending on what brand supplier you use in the case of packaged goods. Therefore, all macronutrients given here are provided as a guideline only.