This recipe for Christmas bolognese comes from an idea I had to make use of colouring pasta. I combine two festive colours – green and red – with some festive ingredients; turkey, broccoli, carrots and peas and serve them together in a surprisingly simple dish. To give the dish a bit of a kick and to keep it full of flavour I added lots of garlic and chilli flakes for some heat and interest.Served hot, and topped with a grated Parmesan snow – the dish looks and tastes great on any table. Of course if you wish you can skip dying the pasta and enjoy it as a simple dinner all year round – I just think this way is more fun!
- 400 g turkey mince
- 250 g linguine
- 200 g broccoli florets
- 100 g peas and/or carrots
- 1 red onion (finely diced)
- 1 red pepper (finely sliced)
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves (chopped)
- 2 tbsp chilli flakes
- 2 tbsp red food colouring
- 2 tbsp green food colouring
- 2 tbsp vinegar
- parmesan (for serving)
- 2 freezer bags (for the colouring process)
- To a large saucepan of salted water, add the linguine pasta and bring to the boil – it should take around 10-12 minutes to cook "al dente".
- Add the olive oil, chopped red onion, garlic and chilli flakes to a non stick frying pan and bring to a medium heat.
- Add the turkey mince to the frying pan and brown together with the spices and onion.
- Next, add the red pepper, some ground black pepper, brocolli florets, and the peas and/or carrots, and continue to cook. You won't need to add salt, as the parmesan will be quite salty.
- When the pasta is cooked but still firm, drain it, and rinse it under cold water to stop it cooking further. Divide into two portions and add each half to a separate freezer bag. To each bag add one tbsp. of food colouring and a tbsp. of vinegar – this should help set and intensify the colour.
- Seal each bag, and shake the colouring vigorously so the mixture colours all of the pasta inside, and then let it sit for a few minutes.
- Using a colander, drain the coloured pasta, then give it a gentle shake and rinse to remove the excess food colouring.
- So that the linguine is not cold, I added it back to the frying pan with the turkey and vegetables and heated it through.
- Serve hot, and dusted with parmesan.