Entertaining and Vegetable Bolognese

As has been usual in the past few weekends, we experimented with our new grill this weekend. Our neighbors must really think us crazy when they see us grilling as soon as the spring showers pause for a few minutes. Just to assure them, its probably just because we paid so much for a grill and because its a new thing for us and we should calm down in a few months, if not weeks ­čÖé .

Anyway, we had a few friends over yesterday and experimented with grilling pork loin. One thing I definitely learnt was there is a BIG difference between pork loin and pork tenderloin. Big, not only in terms of size, but also in terms of cooking.

Just in case, to avoid embarassment due to our experiment failing, I made a quick pasta recipe before we began grilling, adapted from one I had seen on Giada’s show Everyday Italian at the gym last week (Yeah, yeah, I know it defeats the purpose to watch Food Network in the gym, but I love it :-)). I have always wanted to┬átry Bolognese sauce in my pasta, ever since my trip to Italy when I was 15, but could never try it because I do not eat beef. Hence, this version┬áreally appealed to me.

Here’s a link to the original.

┬áHere’s my version.

Penne Rigate with Vegetable Bolognese


  • 1/2 oz dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 1/4 cup of hot water
  • 1/2 a small bag of baby carrots, roughly chopped
  • 1 white onion, peeled and roughly chopped
  • 1 green bell pepper, seeded and roughly chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, peeled, smashed and chopped
  • 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 tsp dried thyme
  • 1 tsp Italian seasoning
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1/2 tsp freshly ground black pepper
  • 8 oz assorted mushrooms (I used shiitake, bella and oyster), stemmed and roughly chopped
  • 3 tbsp tomato paste
  • 1/2 cup red wine
  • 1 small container (8 oz) mascarpone cheese
  • 1 lb whole wheat penne rigate
  • 1/4 cup parmesan, shredded
  • 1/4 cup fresh parsley,┬áchopped


1. Heat the 1 1/4 cups of water in the microwave. Put the dried porcini mushrooms in it and let them reconstitute for a few minutes.

2. Start boiling the pasta water and cook the pasta according to the directions on the box.

3. In the meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pan. Add the carrots, bell peppers, onions and garlic and saute them for a few minutes over medium high heat.

4. When the onions change color, add thyme, oregano, Italian seasoning, salt and pepper. Cookuntil the vegetables are tender.

5. Drain the porcini mushrooms, but reserve the water they were soaked in.

6. Add the porcini and other types of mushrooms into the pan with the veggies.

7. Add the tomato paste and stir it to mix it in.

8. Add the mushroom water and the red wine and stir.

9. Let the liquids come to a boil and then let them simmer until the liquids have reduced by half.

10. Add the mascarpone cheese and mix it in.

11. Add the pasta and about a 1/4 cup of the reserved pasta liquid.

12. Mix it all and then top with parmesan and fresh parsley.



12 responses to “Entertaining and Vegetable Bolognese

  1. Nice step by step instructions. I’ve tasted this a few times and its tastes really good. Your recipe looks so good and delicious. It must have tasted so good.

    Thanks, Shriya, It did taste really good!

  2. Hey this recipe looks delicious….Would love to see u on my blog..

    Sure Hetal..Thanks for stopping by, I will definitely stop by your blog! Take care..

  3. Just yesterday I prepared this same pasta. But I omitted mushrooms and cheese. Your recipe looks so delicious.

    Thanks, Uma! Great minds think alike ­čÖé

  4. Hey, i love this recipe, i am a big fan of Giada. pasta looks awesome and mouth-watering :))


    Thanks, Madhavi…I like your blog very much too!

  5. i have tasted the bolognese sauce, the homemade one…..ur pasta looks real nice

    Bhags, hope my bolognese version tasted as good as the original ­čÖé

  6. pasta looks soooooooooo comfortinggggggg

    Hey, Sagari..yes it was, especially the next day, a rainy, dreary day!

  7. nice step by step instructions and penne luks nice

    Thanks, Sushma!

  8. i love penne pasta and giadas shows too..urs has come out really delcious!!!

    Thanks, Ranji

  9. looks yummy,..nice detailed post..

    Thanks, Priyanka!

  10. Simple to make and always a hit!:) the pasta loks great !:D

    You are absolutely right, Mansi…Thanks!

  11. You’ve got to stop watching food telly at the gym!! But then it all ended well with this pasta by the looks of it…

    I tried to stop Mallika..but nothing else appeals in the gym ­čÖé

  12. The pasta was AWESOME! and so was the grilled stuff! I was the lucky one who got to have it ­čÖé Thanks again for having us over.

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