Bolognese

Bolognese // The Stylist QuoI first made this bolognese for my mother for mother’s day. Dear old mum loves a good bowl of spaghetti and meat sauce, but my dad always makes this weird batch of spaghetti sauce à la whatever-he-likes, which tends to be what no one.. else.. likes. It’s an odd thing. Making a giant pot of bolognese for yourself isn’t that satisfying, either, so it was the perfect dish to make to say “Sorry we were totally on vacation during Mother’s Day! We brought you this shiny thing!”

This bolognese sauce is the perfect workhorse sauce: rich, meaty, and full of flavor. It gets a remarkable depth from the long simmer time, but it’s not so long that it’s a full day of a recipe. This bolognese is a perfect weekend dish–hearty and comforting!

I can’t speak to how seriously authentic it is, as I didn’t really eat much bolognese when I was in Italy. The original recipe claims it’s authentic, but, since the author formulated it to his tastes after traveling around Italy, I don’t know if it has Italian grandmama status. Does it matter? NO! It’s seriously awesome. But since we’re doing part of our honeymoon in Italy, I’ll take it upon myself to find out just how authentic the taste is. Someone‘s got to struggle for their art, right? I’ll bear that brunt, carry that cross. For you.

For you..

Bolognese // The Stylist Quo

You might not be totally sold on the addition of milk at the end of simmering, but trust me on this! It balances the acidity of the tomatoes beautifully, without making the sauce exactly “creamy”. I used all Italian sausage this go-round, because I halved the original recipe, which calls for both ground pork and ground sausage,  and didn’t want to use half packages of ground pork and sauce, but you can switch it up if you like and use a mix you love.

I made my own pasta here, too. Feeling ambitious? It’s not nearly as difficult or time-consuming as you might think! Try David Lebovitz’s recipe before I get around to posting my version.

Bolognese Sauce
Serves 4
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Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 40 min
Prep Time
40 min
Cook Time
2 hr
Total Time
2 hr 40 min
Ingredients
  1. 2 slices bacon
  2. 1/2 medium onion, chopped fine
  3. 1/2 stalk celery, chopped fine
  4. 1/2 large carrot, chopped fine
  5. 2 - 4 cloves garlic, minced
  6. 2 tablespoons butter
  7. 1 1/2 tablespoons olive oil
  8. 1 lb ground Italian sausage
  9. 4 ounces beef stock
  10. 1/2 cup dry white wine
  11. 1 (14 ounce) can Italian style crushed tomatoes (or plain, but make sure they're CRUSHED, not diced)
  12. 1/2 teaspoon salt
  13. 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  14. 1/2 - 3/4 teaspoon rubbed sage
  15. 1/2 tablespoon oregano
  16. 1/4 teaspoon red pepper flakes
  17. 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
  18. 1/2 cup milk (avoid skim [milk water...])
  19. pasta for 4
Instructions
  1. In a medium heavy-bottomed pot, heat butter and olive oil over medium heat until butter begins to froth. Add onion, celery, carrot, garlic, and bacon. Cook until onions are translucent, about 8 to 10 minutes.
  2. Remove bacon and skim out most fat. Chop lean portions of bacon in small pieces and return to pot. Add ground sausage and cook until sausage is browned, breaking up.
  3. Raise heat and add wine and beef broth. Cook sauce until wine and consomme are mostly evaporated, or at least reduced by half. Turn heat down to simmer and add oregano, salt, pepper, sage, red pepper flakes, and nutmeg. Let cook for approximately 20 minutes.
  4. Add crushed tomatoes and bring heat to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer very slowly, partially covered, for about 2 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally to prevent sticking. The longer the better!
  5. About 5 to 10 minutes before serving, add milk. Combine freshly cooked pasta and sauce over very low heat and allow pasta to soak up the sauce, a few minutes.
Adapted from Food.com
Adapted from Food.com
The Stylist Quo http://thestylistquo.com/

Bacon Cookie Butter Cookies with Cinnamon Glaze

Bacon Cookie Butter Cookies with Cinnamon Glaze // The Stylist Quo

I’m not going to beat around the bush with much rhetorical drivel in this post; I’m cutting right to the quick of the chase to honor the sheer urgency that these little miracle bites request.

I’ve created the world’s best cookie, and I’m not ashamed. I’m not humble, either, but that’s what happens when you eat these . You puff up your chest and huff a bit, muttering “damn right” here and there. You Instagram the crap out of them and post a teaser photo on Facebook because you simply can’t keep it in.

These cookies are just.. everything that’s right in the world. And none of what’s wrong.

They consistency is brilliant–buttery and crisp, yet chewy and soft. Paradox cookies? I’ll take forty. The flavor is sweet and a bit spiced, invaded by smoky saltiness that’s perfectly balanced. The slice of bacon  adds texture and intrigue, a little fattiness that’s somehow crisp, airy, and separate from the texture of the cookie. The cinnamon glaze is homey, warm, and cool, all at the same time. The pinch of sea salt in the glaze brings the flavor full circle, waving to the bacon from across the room, winking in silent acknowledgment of the genius of this collaboration.

dual

If you don’t have Cookie Butter, shame on you! But no, really, you can easily substitute peanut butter for Cookie Butter. But only if you get right on acquiring some of that delectable beurre de cookie.

I make these puppies a few at a time, and I’ll publish both ingredient lists. O tends to request them after dinner, and they only take a few minutes to whip together. I use a 50ml beaker to measure out 1/4 of an egg, seriously. If you’re making just a few for you and yours, you don’t have to worry too much about the specific measurement. Keep in mind that 1 large egg equals roughly 1/4 cup (4 tablespoons), so you can easily measure out a beaten egg from there.

If I made the entire batch, they’d take much longer, obviously, and we’d eat them all. All. But if you’re looking to impress anyone at all, a batch of these would do the trick and then some.

Make these.

IMG_0201

Bacon Cookie Butter Cookies with Cinnamon Glaze
Yields 6
These sweet-salty cookies are perfectly spiced and combine everything good, ever.
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
10 min
Serves 6
  1. 3 slices bacon, cut in half
  2. 2 tablespoons butter, softened
  3. 2 tablespoons brown sugar
  4. 2 tablespoons white sugar
  5. 2 tablespoons Cookie Butter or peanut butter
  6. 1/4 egg (about 1 tablespoon)
  7. 1/8 teaspoon vanilla extract
  8. 1/4 cup flour
  9. 1/8 teaspoon baking soda
  10. small pinch salt
  11. powdered sugar, for glaze
  12. cinnamon, for glaze
  13. milk, for glaze
  14. pinch of salt, for glaze
To make 3 dozen
  1. 18 slices bacon (about 1 lb. thin-sliced bacon, a bit more than 1 lb. thick-sliced), cut in half
  2. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  3. 1/2 cup brown sugar
  4. 1/2 cup white sugar
  5. 1/2 cup Cookie Butter, or peanut butter
  6. 1 egg
  7. 1/2 teaspoon vanilla
  8. 1 1/4 cups flour
  9. 3/4 teaspoon baking soda
  10. scant 1/4 teaspoon salt
  11. powdered sugar, for glaze
  12. cinnamon, for glaze
  13. milk, for glaze
  14. pinch of salt, for glaze
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 375º.
  2. Fry bacon 'til crisp, but be careful not to burn! Drain on paper towels.
  3. Mix together peanut butter, butter, brown sugar, white sugar, egg, vanilla. Add flour, baking soda, and salt.
  4. Line cookie sheets (1 if making 6 cookies; work in batches if necessary when making 3 dozen) with parchment. Lay halved slices of bacon down, roughly 3.5 - 4" apart. Using a regular spoon, scoop out spoonfuls of dough. Roll the cookie dough gently between your palms then barely press down on top of the center of one piece of bacon. Repeat until you've used up all the batter.
  5. Freeze the prepared cookie dough for about 15 minutes or refrigerate 1 hour.
  6. Bake 10-12 minutes. Oven times vary! Keep an eye on them. Let cool on baking sheet for about 10 minutes then transfer to a wire cooling rack. Let cool at least 30 minutes.
Create glaze
  1. Mix together powdered sugar, a hefty few shakes of cinnamon, and a pinch of salt. Add a bit of milk (just a little!) and whisk til smooth. This process is highly personal, so add a bit more cinnamon if you like. Prefer a thinner glaze? Add a bit more milk. Want a more frosting-like consistency? Add hardly any milk at all. It's up to you! It'll taste great regardless.
  2. Drizzle on completely cooled cookies.
Adapted from this Food.com recipe, loosely
The Stylist Quo http://thestylistquo.com/

Tacos in the morning, tacos in the evening, tacos at suppertime!

Texas is the mecca for tacos. OK, yeah, Mexico does a pretty decent job, but here in Texas, we’ve figured out a way to have tacos like Pizza Rolls: in the morning, in the evening, and at suppertime. Lunch, too. Stupid Pizza Roll jingle writers.

Yes. Breakfast tacos. When, upon my first visit to Austin in March, I heard of the breakfast taco frenzy, I just imagined those gross breakfast burritos from Taco Bell in taco form. And kinda threw up a little in my mouth. But I figured I’d have to get over my mouthvomit and myself and see what all the fuss was about.

breakfast tacos

The fuss is about something fuss-worthy. Portable little pockets of TexMex fancy goodness. Well, maybe not fancy, but definitely goodness. The best part is that they’re totally customizable, based on just how savory you want to get for breakfast. Still haven’t whipped a more traditional sweet breakfast taco, but I’m gonna go for it one day. Eggs and American sausage and maple syrup topped with some French toast crumbs? Maybe? A buttered tortilla sprinkled with cinnamon? Dare I dream?

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