Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese
Chicken Spaghetti Bolognese (For 2-3 persons)
300g of mince chicken (you can buy it all done or have it homemade- refer step 2 to 5)
2 medium size onions
2 small carrots
4 cloves of garlic
Salt and pepper to season
2.5 teaspoons of corn flour
1 teaspoon of sugar
3 tablespoons of Olive oil
3 medium size tomatoes
4 tablespoons of tomato sauce (refer photo step 10)
1 teaspoon of sweet Basil (refer photo step 3)
3 teaspoons of Oregano (refer photo step 3)
3-4 branches of thyme
1 bouquet of parsley
Some mint leaves for decoration
35g of grated Parmesan cheese
300g of Spaghetti No7 (refer photo step 13)
3L of water (to cook spaghetti)
30g of coarse salt/ gros sel (big flake salt to season Spaghetti cooking water)
10000 tonnes of Love ...
Note: For all pasta products including Spaghetti, I normally use the "Barilla" brand. For instance it is good that you know about the No. on the box which is determining with respect to the thickness and cooking time of the Spaghetti. I personally prefer to use the No.7 which is thicker in diameter and cooks in 11 minutes but you can also use the No.5 which is thinner and has a shorter cooking time of 8 minutes.
Tip 1: Always ensure that all your pasta products when cooked are "Al dente" / Al-den-té which means "firm to the bite" or "cuit a point". This is why you should strictly respect the cooking time. All mobile phones are equiped with a timer nowadays ..
Tip 2: This same recipe can be used with any other meat of your choice. Just replace the chicken with beef, lamb, pork or any other meat you prefer.
Step 1: In your pan add your chopped onions, chopped carrots, 3 grated garlic cloves, 1 teaspoon of sugar, 2 pinches of salt, 2 pinches of pepper and 1 tablespoon of Olive oil and allow to cook on a low-medium heat until your onions become soft and translucent. Do not forget to stir them from time to time. As soon as the onions become translucent, stop the heat.
Step 2: Prepare your chicken mince. Take about 250-300g of meat in any chicken part/s of your preference (legs, breast etc...), remove the bones and skin. Here I used chicken breast because it is the part having the less amount of fat.
Tip: You may also purchase all-done your chicken mince at the market. On my side I certainly prefer to make mine because the industrial ones normally contain a high amount of fat (saturated type) which is not very good for health. So when it is home made, you have full control ..
Step 3: Cut your meat in thin slices as far as possible. Transfer your sliced meat into a bowl and add 1 grated clove of garlic, 2 small pinches of salt, 1 small pinch or pepper, 1 teaspoon of sweet basil and 1 teaspoon on oregano.
Step 4: Finally fully dissolve 1 teaspoon of corn flour into 2 teaspoons of water and add the mixture to your bowl containing your sliced meat. I normally add this corn flour mixture just to act as a "linking element" between all ingredients. Then get your hand mixture. See why I call the latter a magic stick ...
Step 5: Blend blend blend until you obtain a smooth chicken paste !
Step 6: Using about half of the amount of your chicken paste obtained in previous step, make small balls of chicken using the palms of your hands (about 3-4 per person).
Tip: Spread some oil on the palms of your hands prior to making the balls to ensure they won`t stick
Step 7: Add the other half of your chicken paste to your onions/carrots mixture and on low-medium heat stir fry for 3-4 minutes. It is important that you stir from time to time while "breaking apart" the chicken pieces to prevent them from forming any big lumps.
Step 8: While your chicken is cooking; wash, peel and cut your tomatoes into thin slices. Do not forget to remove the coarse middle part prior to cutting into slices.
Tip: I normally use fresh tomatoes rather than canned types because the taste with fresh tomatoes is far far better. Moreover I find than canned tomatoes contain too much food preservatives and are highly acidic (Bonjour les brulures d'estomac !).
Step 9: When your chicken is cooked (off-white/ golden brown color), add your sliced tomatoes and allow to soften.
Step 10: Once your tomatoes are fully soft, add 4 tablespoons of tomato sauce, half of your bouquet of parsley (thinly chopped), 2 teaspoons of oregano, 3-4 branches of thyme, 1 tablespoon of Olive oil, 3 pinches of salt, 2 pinches of pepper and about 80ml of water. Stir continously on a low-medium heat.
Note: I normally use the tomato sauce below because it is the one I find less acidic and also just to give my sauce a deeper red color ..
Step 11: Only when your sauce starts to boil, fully dissolve 1.5 teaspoons of corn flour in about 80ml of water and add the mixture to your sauce. Stir while waiting for your mixture to thicken. As soon as it does, add your grated Parmesan cheese. Stir until it melts fully.
Step 12: Your Bolognese sauce is ready ! Stop the heat, cover your pan and put it aside.
Tip: Taste your sauce at this stage and add some salt if required ..
Step 13: Get your Spaghetti Barilla No.7 !
Step 14: Put 3L of water in a pan, add 30g of coarse salt (gros sel) and wait for the water to boil*. Only when the water is boiling, place your 300g spaghetti in the center and release them. Start your timer as from this moment set to 11 minutes.
*Important Tip: Ratio of Salt: Pasta:Water is 10:100:1000, that is 10 grams of salt for cooking 100 grams of pasta in 1000 milliliters of water (where 1000 ml = 1 liter). Note that here the salt to be used is NOT table salt (fine salt) but coarse salt (gros sel)!
Note: When the lower/immersed part of the Spaghetti will start to soften, the upper part will slowly fall in place in the water too. You can use any appropriate kitchen tool (spatula/ wooden spoon etc..) to help.
Step 15: While your Spaghetti is cooking, in a small pan and on low heat, add 1 tablespoon of Olive oil and when it is hot enough add your meatballs.
Step 16: When you see that the lower halves of your meatballs have become opaque white like indicated below, turn them upside down using any food tongs.
Tip: Avoid using metal tongs like I did when using a non-stick pan for they may damage the non-stick coat. There are many other types of tongs which are made of wood and silicon..
Step 17: By the time your meatballs will be fully cooked, your timer may also ring indicating end of the cooking time of your Spaghetti. When it does ring, stop the heat, transfer your Spaghetti in a colander to remove the excess water and from the colander straight to your Bolognese sauce !
Step 18: Mix mix mix and then using your tongs, transfer your spaghetti on your plates. Ensure to give them a "Twist" in a clockwise or anti-clockwise direction for a better look while serving..
Step 19: Top up with 3-4 meatballs, mint leaves and some thinly chopped parsley (from the remaining bouquet from step 10). And voila !...
Bon Appetit !...
THANK YOU FOR WATCHING !...