The dish we call savoury mince in our house is super versatile. It’s quite similar to bolognese, but with subtle variations you can turn it into, chilli con carne, lasagna, or cottage pie!
You will need:
- a sharp knife
- a chopping board
- a wok or deep saucepan with lid
and the ingredients (for four people):
- A little oil
- 2 medium onions
- 500g beef, lamb, or Quorn mince (a.k.a. ground meat)
- 1 bell pepper
- 2-3 carrots
- tinned chopped tomatoes
- tomato puree
- frozen peas or spinach
- mixed herbs
Start by placing your pan on a gentle heat. Add a little oil (less than a teaspoon is fine), and dice your onion. (You can find more detailed instructions here: onions)
Add your onion to the pan, along with a generous sprinkle of mixed herbs. (I often also add a little bit of garlic, but you don’t have to.)
Next, add your mince. Stir everything together, and break up any clumps of mince that are sticking together.
Dice your pepper (you can find the tutorial here: pepper), then add it to the pan.
Grate your carrots. (Remember to leave the top on to use as a handle while grating – you can find more tips in last week’s tutorial here.)
Add your grated carrot to the pan, followed by a tin of tomatoes. To make sure you’re not wasting any tomato-y goodness, rinse out the tin with a splash of water.
Mix everything together, and put the lid on. This helps the pan heat up quicker, and keeps the moisture in.
After 5-10 minutes, add a generous dollop of tomato puree. This makes the sauce richer; if you don’t have tomato puree you can use ketchup instead.
Your dish is nearly done, so make sure to taste your sauce. If it tastes like it’s lacking something, try adding a little salt or some more tomato puree.
Five minutes before serving, add your frozen peas or spinach to the pan.
Make sure to mix everything together before serving!
This version of savoury mince is perfect with pasta. But if you have any leftovers, it also makes great nachos!
Remember, this recipe is only a base, so feel free to play around with it! Try adding chilli or paprika to spice it up a little, or using some different herbs. You could add a tin of beans along with the peas, either to complement or replace the mince. Or you could try using different vegetables – why not add some mini broccoli florets, or even try parsnip instead of carrot?