Big Bowl of Love

Cristina Ferrare’s Big Bowl of Love – Good Friends, Good Food with Henry Winkler : Bolognese a la Ferrare, Grilled Artichokes with Spicy Dipping Sauce

Big Bowl of Love’s Cristina Ferrare mixes it up with her good friend Henry Winkler. Surrounded by her good friend, the Fonz (sorry I couldn’t resist- he is SO cool) CF pulls out the big guns for her fantastic Bolognese sauce. Prepare for an episode of good food and loads of fun!

What’s on today’s menu?

  • Bolognese a la Ferrare
  • Grilled Artichokes with Spicy Dipping Sauce

After Henry Winkler calls Cristina the “Picasso of Food”, CF starts off by telling a story about Henry Winkler has been searching for the best bolognese sauce. I loved how he tucked the kitchen towel into his sweater before he dug into the dish. Clearly he anticipated getting a bit messy. He is so silly…“this could be in a museum, the museum of sauce”. At the end he comments that if we don’t like the recipes as much as he does, then he will come to our house and do the dishes. I am kinda torn…I almost don’t want to like them now.

Now for a few BBOL tips:

  • Soffritto is the base of onions, carrots and celery.
  • Remove the onions before you chop up the celery and carrots, otherwise the onions will get too watery.
  • Buy ground chuck and have the butcher grind it for you. Tastes great!
  • Pork is important to the sauce because it gives a lot of flavor.
  • Milk protects the tomatoes and the wine from getting into the meat. It will make it nice and creamy.
  • Always salt your water well or your noodles will taste flat.
  • When adding tomatoes from a can, add sugar to offset the acidity.
  • If sauce is too thick, add more water. Check every 20 minutes or so. Only add ½ cup at a time so it doesn’t get too watery.
  • Remove as much water as possible from the pasta so that it doesn’t water down the sauce.
  • Chipenawed Roll spices together like a cigar and cut them all at once. Great time saver.
  • Pappardelle, penne or even linguine pastas work great with this sauce.
  • Prep your artichoke by removing the tiny bottom leaves off, peeling off the outer stem, use a serrated knife to slowly cut the artichoke in half, remove a few more leaves to get closer to the heart and cut off the top of the artichoke that was the pointed tips.
  • Place artichokes in cold water and flavor with garlic and olive oil to add wonderful flavor while it boils for 45 minutes.
  • Cutting away the choke- take your knife and cut gently at the place where the grayish-green meets the light yellowish-green near the stem. Gently run the knife along the edge and slowly lift the center out. It will create an oval hole. Remove a few of the thin leaves that have the little tips on them. Be sure NOT to cut and remove all the leaves in this process.
  • Don’t like your sauce spicy, then leave out the cayenne pepper from the recipe.
  • Hollow out the top of an artichoke and add a candle or flowers to make a nice centerpiece for your table.

Here are a couple of my OWN suggestions:

  • Try a nice quick aioli sauce for your artichoke. You only need a ½ cup of mayo, a chopped garlic clove, juice from one lemon and salt and pepper to taste. There are better recipes, but they involve egg and usually take more time. This one works for me!
  • When ever I make homemade sauce, I always make a little extra. I am able to freeze it and pull off a great meal in a pinch when needed.
  • Marinate your artichokes before grilling them. I always like to use a little olive oil, red wine vinegar, garlic, a touch of Dijon, fresh basil and parsley only to be topped with a dash of salt and pepper. Yummmmm!

Invite over a good friend and mix up a little fun for yourself!

Links to OWN for the recipes:

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