Blustery, and Bubbling Bolognese

comments: 40


The weather all weekend was so blustery and cold. This morning rain pelting the bedroom windows (and rattling them constantly — they are very old) woke me (that and a cat snoring on my neck and a dog walking on my hair). Yesterday (Sunday) I didn't leave the house at all, and only opened the back door eight or nine times to let various pets out and in (five minutes later — nobody wanted to be outside). Andy had the iPod at work so I couldn't play Words with Friends (my new vocation), but that was probably good because it meant that I actually made some progress on my WIPs. I watched the 2005 Little House on the Prairie movies on the Hallmark channel, which was really fun since I just finished re-reading Little House in the Big Woods and Little House on the Prairie recently (I've finished all the books on my sidebar list, and have to do a book post, I know, since I'm actually reading new ones now). It felt so good to have a weekend where we didn't really go anywhere or do anything. 

Claire inspired me to make some bolognese sauce — isn't her illustration of the Sunday Night Spag Bol so adorable? I had a recipe from Mario that I'd been wanting to try for a while, and it seemed like the perfect blustery weekend for several hours of viscous simmering (be sure to keep the heat low, cast a watchful eye on the bottom of that pot, and stir frequently). I used ground beef and finely diced the pancetta (I keep it frozen so it's easier to slice). I like my spaghetti served very specifically: sauce only on top, not mixed up, and with a blob of ricotta. Andy likes his all mixed up, no ricotta (not into it). Either way you like it, this was delicious, and seemed just right for a lazy day that felt much more like fall than spring. (And, like Claire suggests, you can freeze a bunch of it, too, for when you don't have a whole lazy afternoon to cook.)


Oh I treasure those lay-about-the-house weekends! With our babies getting bigger and playing sports- those sweet Saturdays come few and far between. With sound of falling rain and a good Jane Austen movie- all I need is a cute little cuddler and I'm in Heaven.

Even the weathermen here in Portland said this morning, "Is it October?" I woke up to the sound of rain hitting the windows, too, this morning.

Sounds like a perfectly delicious weekend! I loved the Little House books when I was a girl, and not long ago I listened to the audio version of Little House on the Prairie, beautifully read by Cherry Jones. I highly recommend it! As someone who LOVES books but never has much time to read, audio books are a saving grace.

The most interesting thing about revisiting the story was realizing how much of the stuff they do and make and experience are the same things I do now that I live way out in the country. :)

Laura Ingalls Wilder spent her later years in Missouri with Almanzo, and her home is now a museum, which I've been meaning to go visit ever since I moved to Missouri 15 years ago. One of these days!

It's been similarly cold and windy (complete with hail stones) here on the NE coast of England so definitely not salad for supper. Looking forward to a book post (Howard's End is a favourite of mine).

That spaghetti looks so yummy. I will never in my life tire of spaghetti. The kids and I caught the last Little House movie that was on that day and I wished we could have taped them all for future watching. We read all the Little House books two summers ago and my son's fourth grade class is doing an author study of Laura Ingalls right now so it was fun for all of us. It felt like they took some liberties with the story but maybe my recollection isn't keen- did they really take the Homestead from Ma and Pa? I didn't remember that and I didn't remember poor Mr. Edwards getting his house burned down. Overall it was pretty good though!

Delicious! Love the books you posted--what else are you reading?

Looks yummy!

Yesterday it was wonderful summer weather in my part of Sweden - today it was back to october... I hope the warmth will come back soon...

The weekend weather here wasn’t too lovely was it? :) We were camping on Friday night and it was chilly. The recipe looks delicious. I am currently hooked on Words with Friends, what is your name? Mine is oregonsurfer if you want to play. It’s so addicting! I love your blog, it’s so nice to read it.

Melissa L. says: May 03, 2010 at 10:03 AM

The skylight in my bathroom is leaking. If you want to use the toilet in there, you have to put up an umbrella. Tra-la-la, springtime in Portland...

PS: You deserve your own iPod!

ooooooooo pefectly yummy !

I just went and saw Little House on the Prairie The Musical on Saturday. Melissa Gilbert plays Ma and actually has a decent voice. It was amazing to see how many women from 8 years old to 80 years old still love Little House.

Oh, yum! My DH doesn't like ricotta either -- what's up with that? I don't want to live in a world without ricotta.

It is plenty hot and summery here in Austin, but I am craving pastitsio for some reason. Weird.

Mmm..That looks yummy and sounds like a great weekend..I caught the Little House movies, too, so good..Another book post would be fabulous!

Yum... that looks very good. Especially right now, as it's almost lunch time in Los Angeles.

I just read Little House in the Big Woods and Little House on the Prairie too (and reviewed them)! I love them for before bed because they are so easy to read and don't give me bad dreams. :)

Julie G. in Iowa says: May 03, 2010 at 11:51 AM

Sauce only on the top, hold the ricotta please! YUM!

puglette says: May 03, 2010 at 12:17 PM

yummy! i loved all of the little house books so much! when i read them as a child i would stay up until i finished each one. i would read under the blankets with a flashlight, a very fond memory!

Yes, the Little House books are a great testimony to the 'days of old' and have many great lessons that can be learned and put to use today as well. We've read them many times in our years of homeschooling. We particularly favor reading 'The Long Winter' during the blustery days of winter here in NY. I also have the 'Little House Cookbook' and have made many of the recipes they've adapted from the books. We always make Ma's pumpkin pie recipe for Thanksgiving. It takes maple flavoring and does that ever make the pie taste yummy! Hmmm, it's chilly today and we still have some butternut squash left over from last harvest...might be a good night for one of Ma's Pumpkin Pies!

I remember watching the Little House on the Prairie years ago and wishing I had lived then. I like your list of books
my favourite being Anne of Green Gables(my parents gave me a copy one Christmas and I still have it with a book marker that one of my sons stitched when he was in the infants at school!) Weather here in this part of the world
has been windy rain with hail stones and colder.

I have been looking for a go-to bolognese recipe for a while. I'll have to try Mario's.

I've never heard of adding ricotta but any excuse to add more cheese gets the go ahead from me!

I live about 60km's from Johannesburg in South Africa. It's supposed to be autumn here, but rain hasn't stopped for 8 days and it is seriously cold! I too LOVE staying indoors and could crochet for days on end. Thanks for the link to Loobyloo's blog. Her Spag Bol sounds yummy.

That's my kind of perfect weekend too!

I like my spaghetti not mixed too. But if it's penne or fusilli? Totally mixed. Also must have lashings of (real) parmesan cheese.

Hope you have a lovely week! Oh, did you end up crocheting the alpine frost scarf? I finally blocked mine, and it's lovely. The malabrigo lace is very snuggly without being suffocating. I should take a final photo and put in on my Ravelry project page, I suppose.

I'm addicted to Words with Friends too!! I am also incredibly sick of this weather. Record low high tomorrow? Yuck.

That looks absolutely, amazingly delicious!

Ooh, I have a Words with Friends addiction right now too (HeyLucyloo, if you'd like to play with me) :o)

I don't know how many times I read the Little House books growing up, but I loved them so much! I regularly re-read Anne of Green Gables, but for some reason haven't re-read the Little House ones for years. I need to do something about that!

That spag bol looks so delicious! I wish I had some right now... it's making me really hungry :)

Up here in New York the weather has been getting pretty humid and warm. I'm not much of a summer person, so I am experiencing autumn vicariously through your description of the blustery and chilly weather you're experiencing. One of my favorite things about winter is having the excuse to be a hermit for a day, staying under the covers and watching old movies!

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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at