Now I'm sure there will be some foodies who will gasp in horror at what I am doing here. I cook spaghetti bolognaise in the traditional Italian style fairly often. This week, I had pork mince instead of beef mince so I thought I'd give my bolognaise some Spanish flavour (paprika, saffron, thyme) instead of using oregano and lots of black pepper. I'm sure that technically it's also completely wrong to call it a bolognaise - if this has a real name, please let me know!!
This recipe on it's own works out at just 5pp (the only ingredient with any points is the meat). I serve it with 60g dried weight wholewheat pasta for another 5pp, meaning the whole meal is only 10pp - this will fit in with almost any day, even if you're on a minimum of 26pp per day. If you have a lot more points to play with, I would probably serve with some garlic bread too and perhaps substitute the cooking spray for olive oil to get your 'healthy oil' serving for the day (add an extra 1pp for a teaspoon of olive oil - 3pp for 2 teaspoons per serving).
Ingredients (Serves 2)
225g lean pork mince
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 onion, finely chopped (my picture shows 2, I only needed 1)
250g (approx) mushrooms, roughly chopped
1 small red pepper, diced
1 teaspoon garlic powder
1 teaspoon paprika
1 teaspoon smoked paprika
1 pinch saffron
190ml chicken stock (I use a low salt stock cube)
1/2 teaspoon dried thyme (fresh would be better if you have it)
1/4 teaspoon chilli flakes
Salt and Pepper
Calorie Controlled cooking spray
120g (dried weight) wholewheat pasta to serve
Preheat oven to 180ºC
1. Spray a heavy bottomed pan (preferably one which you can transfer to the oven) with calorie controlled cooking spray. Heat the pan to a medium heat and add the mushrooms.
2. Add the garlic powder, some freshly ground pepper and a sprinkle of salt. The salt with begin to draw the moisture out of the mushrooms so that they cook in their own juices and you don't need oil. I turned my heat down to low until some of the moisture was released to avoid burning.
3. Add the onion and pepper and soften before adding the pork mince. Stir until the meat is cooked through.
4. Add the paprika, smoked paprika, thyme, saffron and chilli flakes and stir to distribute the spices evenly through the meat.
5. Add the tomatoes and stock to the pan and combine before transferring the whole dish to the preheated oven. I did not cover the ragu as I wanted some of the liquid to evaporate to give a thicker consistency.
6. Remove from the oven after about 30 minutes and serve with cooked pasta.
I have to say, I really enjoyed this! My husband thought it was a little too smoky (you could cut down the smoked paprika if that's not your thing) but I loved it. Warm and filling, perfect for a cold winters evening!