We add fennel to the mirepoix (a savory mix of diced veggies that usually includes carrots, celery and onion) which adds a licorice-like sweetness to the sauce. It's best to cook the sauce, let cool and refrigerate overnight to let all the flavors meld together.
Technique tip: When reheating the sauce, add a little tomato sauce to smooth it out.
- 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
- 1 large bulb fennel, coarsely chopped
- 1 large carrot, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- 3 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 1 pound ground chicken
- 1 pound ground beef
- 2 cups tomato sauce
- 1 cup white wine
- 2 cups beef stock
- 1/4 cup butter
- 1/2 cup Parmesan cheese
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1. In a food processor, grind the onion, fennel and carrot until fine.
2. In a large saucepan heat the olive oil over low heat.
3. Add the ground vegetables, pepper flakes and garlic, then simmer for about 30 minutes, or until the moisture evaporates, stirring occasionally.
4. Brown the chicken and beef in the same pan.
5. Then add the tomato sauce, wine and stock to the saucepan. Stir everything together to mix it up and simmer over medium to high heat, stirring occasionally, for 1½ hours or until the sauce thickens and is reduced by one quarter.
6. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Serve over your favorite pasta or zucchini noodles (aka zoodles).