Mary Berry’s latest TV series — Mary Berry’s Simple Comforts — has already introduced me to several easy but delicious recipes I will be making long into the future.
So, when I saw how simple Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake from the same TV show looked, I knew this one would be the next dish on my list to try.
Needless to say, with two different versions of the bake having now been made in my kitchen (meat and vegan variations of the dish), I can tell you not only is Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake very tasty, but it can be easily adapted to a vegan dish as well, if you are so inclined.
How to make Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 onions
- 2 sticks of celery
- 675g/1lb 8oz minced beef (4 large carrots finely grated, chopped tofu or a mix of tofu and grated carrots — any of these options work great for a vegan dish)
- 2 cloves of garlic
- 2 tbsp tomato purée
- 2 x 400g tins chopped tomatoes
- 500ml/18fl oz beef stock (or vegetable stock for the vegan version)
- 2 tsp Worcestershire sauce (2 tsp soy sauce for vegans)
- 2 tsp redcurrant jelly (I skipped this both times as I didn’t have any, and didn’t notice the sauce lacking)
- 1 tbsp butter (or vegan butter, of course)
- 250g/9oz chestnut mushrooms
- 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 225g/8oz penne pasta
- 80g/2¾oz cheese (or vegan cheese)
- Chop the onions and celery into small pieces and place in a frying pan with a splash of olive oil (You can also cook them with water if you don’t want to add oil to the mix). Finely chop the clove of garlic and add to the pan.
- Cook for around 3 minutes just to soften the vegetables, then add the grated carrots and/0r tofu.
- Add the tomato purée, the redcurrant jelly and the tins of chopped tomatoes.
- Pour in the beef/vegetable stock then add the Worcestershire sauce or the soy sauce,
- Mix everything together well, place the lid on the pan and cook on a very low heat for 30-40 minutes.
- Fry the mushrooms in butter/vegan butter until tender.
- Cook the pasta.
- Once the bolognese sauce is cooked, add the mushrooms and the thyme and mix thoroughly.
- Throw in the now-cooked pasta and stir, making sure all the pasta is coated with sauce.
- Spoon into a baking dish. Grate the cheese/vegan cheese and sprinkle over the top of the dish.
- Cook in an oven at 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6 for 20-30 minutes. Once the top is golden brown, remove from the oven and serve.
Mary also shows how she makes the salad she usually serves along with her Bolognese Pasta Bake if you want to do the same with yours. Watch the video below for her recipe.
For my first couple of tries at Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake, I made the same salad I usually eat with a balsamic/olive oil dressing both times as it goes well with Italian food. (article continues below..)
I had no complaints from anyone who ate it, including the vegans in my group, so I will definitely be making it again. You, however, can try Mary’s salad option.
And that is how to make Mary Berry’s Bolognese Pasta Bake.
Not that difficult and quite affordable, eh?
Note: This recipe is from Mary Berry’s Simple Comforts — Episode 4, “Home“.
I am a Brit-American journalist, former radio DJ at 97X WOXY, and Founder/CEO of Leo Sigh. I’m also obsessed with music, anime, manga, and K-dramas. Help!