Friday, October 15, 2010

Lesson Learned

I remember when I was younger that days like today would get me really worried.
Not because the wind is gusting to 30 mph or because it's overcast with the threat of rain. 
It's October. 
I expect those kinds of days.
No, what really got me worried was that it was only October 15th, and if the high temperature was only in the mid-50's this early in the month... 
Because that is just SO not cool.
Unless you're dressed as the Michelin Man*.

* Also not cool. Although Stay Puft would be acceptable.

So in this weather I make dinner a la Bolognese, or just a ragu, quite often and for many reasons. It's delicious, it's fairly easy**, it's comforting and satisfying... but the most common reason that it ends up on our plates is because ground meat is inexpensive. And if one particular meat is on sale that week, then that is going to be what we eat.

However, I recently learned my lesson on that front.
Beef Bolognese - delicious, rich, classic
Veal Bolognese - delicious, delicate
Chicken Bolognese - not my first choice, but with a little tweaking can be a nice change
Turkey Bolognese - tastier than chicken if you get a little color on it
Dark Meat Turkey Bolognese - Make Burgers Instead

Dark meat turkey is so much more flavorful than turkey breast that it just lends itself to making burgers or other meals in which the meat is the star flavor. When I used it in my bolognese recently, I was really thrown off by the strong turkey flavor. It was like having leftover Thanksgiving turkey but covered in tomato sauce instead of gravy and cranberry sauce.
Maybe it won't bother you, but for me it was just weird.

** Easy if you cheat and use a pre-made slow-cooked tomato sauce instead of fresh tomatoes which take hours and hours to cook down...
I started out sautéing a chopped onion, 1 grated carrot, and the dark meat turkey.
Just make sure it's opaque once cooked since it is poultry.

Add favorite tomato sauce if lazy, or a 14oz can of crushed tomatoes if you have all afternoon, and then the herbs and seasonings of your choice .

Such as fresh basil ribbons!
Don't forget the wine of your choice to cook down as well.

When the sauce has melded and come together, add a bit of milk or cream for richness.
Check for seasoning.

This looks just like any other sauce, but alas, it will not be happening again in my kitchen.
That is also why this is a bit of a slap-dash description of the meal.
I didn't actually want to remember it.
But, that's just me.

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