There’s a restaurant in Chico called Crush that makes a rockin’ Bolognese sauce; thick, rich, and meaty. When we visit this restaurant they are happy to serve their scrumptious sauce over veggies rather than the standard pasta and it’s mouthwatering good. In an attempt to recreate this yummy dish and with the abundance of eggplant that I have thanks to my awesome CSA, I decided to make a fast and easy version of this meal!
My easy Bolognese turned out way yummier than expected for the little amount of work that went into the actual preparation and my family is already requesting that I make it again – like NOW!! I hope you all enjoy!
Easy Eggplant Bolognese
4 tablespoons bacon fat or coconut oil (I highly recommend using bacon fat for awesome flavor!)
2 medium sized Italian eggplants peeled and cubed (approximately 3-4 cups)
1 red bell pepper cut into bite size pieces
1 small red onion, sliced
1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground pork
1 teaspoon sea salt + more to taste
2 tablespoons red wine (you can sub with balsamic vinegar if you like)
3-4 garlic cloves minced
1 ½ cups tomato sauce (I love Bionaturea strained tomatoes!)
1 tablespoon dried oregano
Black pepper to taste
1. In a large soup pot, heat 2 tablespoons of the bacon fat over medium heat. Add the eggplant and saute until tender, approximately 5-8 minutes.
2. Remove the eggplant from the pan and set aside.
3. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of bacon fat to the pot and saute the bell peppers and onions until tender, about another 5-8 minutes. Remove the peppers and onions from the pot and set aside as well.
4. Crumble the ground pork and ground beef into the pot and brown. Add the teaspoon of salt and stir.
5. Add the red wine and garlic and bring to a simmer. Stir the simmering meat and wine until the alcohol smell starts to subside.
6. Add the eggplant, peppers, and onions back to the pan with the meat, pour in the tomato sauce, add the oregano, and some black pepper and bring to a simmer.
7. Taste and season with more sea salt if desired.
8. Serve in bowls and enjoy!
9. Feel free to serve over sauted or steamed veggies of your choice like zucchini, broccolini, julienned carrots, kale, etc.