quarantine diaries, comfort food & all the small things that keep us going
I promised on my last post to make a mini series of posts with your culinary experiences and the small things that keep us all going during these crazy times. I think I should go first with my comfort food: spaghetti bolognese or Makarónia me kimá.
Head straight to the recipe.
A few words about you, where did the quarantine find you?
Eugenia, London, blogger in charge of EYG. I have a day job too, in marketing. We started working from home early on. Private sector took social distancing a bit more seriously than BoJo; many had read the cues before the official mandates came into force. It’s been a manic couple of weeks as we were all adjusting to the new situation. Currently I’m happily indoors, on furlough or involuntary holiday.
What did it change for you ?
Obvisouly the whole world is gone topsy-turvy, how could I be left out? I just moved home, for which I am really grateful but the practicalities of settling in were not exactly smooth. I’m very lucky I managed to get the furniture in before everyone started closing down. My biggest dilemma is where to sit: sofa or armchair. These choices become harder and harder by the day – officially 3 weeks indoors – so I resort to the kitchen.
How many loo-rolls can you count in your cupboards?
Hmm, let me see. I think 8 – they are a precious commodity. I wonder if people will go on a loo-roll hunt instead of Easter egg hunt – oh wait, we cannot do either. Damn!
Comfort food: Makarónia me kimá, Spaghetti Bolognese
Spaghetti bolognese, aka makarónia me kimá, is the dish we’d share for an easy going Sunday lunch, with family or friends; a weeday no-brainer and what Grand-ma Nia always makes when I go visit. Comfort food in all its might and height.
Spaghetti Bolognese, Makarónia me kimá
- 500 gr beef mince
- 2 medium carrots chopped
- 1 onion finely chopped
- 1 clove of garlic
- 100 ml dry red wine
- 400 gr chopped tomatoes tin or fresh even better
- 3-4 allspice berries
- 2-3 sprigs of thyme
- 2 tbspn tomato paste
- A pinch of sugar
- 1 pack of spaghetti
- a generous helping of grated cheese of choice
- For the mince meat sauce, start in a large pot by sautéing the onion and after 5-7 minutes follow up with the minced garlic and chopped carrots.
- Once the carrots are soft, turn the heat up and add in the beef mince, sauté for another 5 minutes and put off with the wine.
- As soon as the wine has evaporated, add in the tomatoes, tomato paste, all spice berries, the obligatory pinch of sugar and thyme. Add warm water to cover, season with salt and pepper and let the mince meat sauce come to the boil.
- Then lower the heat and simmer for 45 minutes to an hour. The slower you cook this sauce the better it will get.
- Serve the warm spaghetti with a generous helping of Bolognese and plenty of freshly grated cheese.
How do you cope?
I’m trying to maintain a normal routine. Still waking up early-ish. I think my place is currently sparkling clean and very neat. I make sure to make a mess just so I have something to get cracking on the next day. Get ready for more recipes as I try to combat boredom.
Where will you go eat once this madness is over?
Sushi – sorry it’s not souvlaki, as I do make it myself. But fresh fish in the current dubious supermarket situation is something I miss (don’t talk to me about canned tuna). And then it is definitely Athens, I do miss my family so much!
Share a wish, just so we finish on a happy note
I do hope we will come out of this not just fatter but also wiser. Now that almost everything has slowed down, it’s a good time to reflect on what we really miss and what we can really change.
Be kind to one another! and stay safe!
If you wish to be part of my quarantine cuisine diaries and share your experience on Eat Yourself Greek (EYG), please drop me a line here.
From London with love,