This delicious rotini pasta bolognese is simmered in red wine, seasoned with heaps of oregano, and topped with fresh basil and parmesan cheese!
Valentine’s Day is next week and what better way to celebrate than a bowl of delicious homemade pasta bolognese, garlic bread, and a bottle of wine?
Valentine’s Day is always one of those tricky holidays to celebrate. Do you go out to a fancy restaurant or do you stay home and make a nice meal together? Last year, my boyfriend Fabio and I made the decision to stay home for Valentine’s day. This was mostly due to the fact that we were too late in the game to get a reservation anywhere and the fact that I kept turning away restaurants that had a prefixed menu. Just because it’s Valentines Day doesn’t mean I should pay more for a meal and be limited to my menu options. Just sayin.
We have dinner reservations this year for Valentines Day to celebrate Fabio’s moms birthday, but for those that are staying in, I have the perfect pasta dish for you to make with your loved! This bolognese sauce is not only simmered in red wine, but it’s packed with onion, garlic, and tons of seasoning!
When making this pasta, I highly recommend using a Merlot for the red wine. One of the first times I tried this pasta I used a really bold Cabernet and the wine flavor was a little too overpowering. I used a cup of 2014 Merlot from one of the local wineries here in Livermore, 3 Steve’s Winery. I of course then thoroughly enjoyed the rest of the bottle 🙂 If you don’t have a Merlot on hand, a Red Zinfandel would work great too!
Another tip when making this pasta is to use Rotini noodles. I’ve literally tried making this recipe with 5 different kinds of noodles! 5! Its amazing to me how a simple noodle can change the overall taste of the dish. Rigatoni noodles were too thick and all you could taste was noodle. Angel hair pasta was too thin and stringy, making the pasta taste more like a spaghetti. Orecchiette and Mini Penne were too small. Rotini noodles ended up to be perfect! Because of they’re spiral shape, the noodles picked up the perfect amount of bolognese in each bite!
Serve this pasta with some garlic bread and a bottle of wine and you’ve got the perfect night in! I love serving this pasta with 3 Ingredient Garlic Bread.
Happy Valentine’s Day!
- 1 Tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 Medium Yellow Onion, Chopped
- 5 Cloves Garlic, Minced
- 1 Pound Ground Beef, 90% lean 10% fat
- 3 Tsp Salt, Divided
- 2 Tsp Pepper, Divided
- 1 Cup Dry Red Wine, Preferably Merlot
- 1 28oz Can Crushed Tomatoes
- 3 Tbsp Tomato Paste
- 1½ Tbsp Oregano Leaves
- 2 Tsp Basil Leaves
- 1 Tsp Parsley Flakes
- 1 Tsp Italian Seasoning
- ⅛ Tsp Crushed Red Pepper
- ⅛ Tsp Ground All Spice
- ⅛ Tsp Ground Nutmeg
- 1 Pound Rotini Noodles, Cooked according to package*
- Optional: 3 Ingredient Garlic Bread
- Fresh Basil, Chopped
- Parmesan Cheese, Finely Grated
- In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil.
- Add the onion and garlic and stir for about 5 minutes or until the onion becomes translucent.
- Add the ground beef and season with 1 Tsp salt and 1Tsp pepper. Cook for about 8 minutes until the meat is cooked through. Remove the pan from the stove and drain out the fat from the meat.
- Return the pan to the stove and add the red wine. Let the wine cook with the meat for about 5 minutes over medium heat.
- Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, oregano, basil, parsley, italian seasoning, crushed red pepper, all spice, nutmeg, and the remaining 2 Tsp salt and 1Tsp pepper.
- Cover and simmer for 10-15 minutes to let the flavors blend and to let the wine cook down.
- Serve over rotini noodles and top with parmesan cheese and fresh basil.