Poblano Bolognese Pasta

Italian meat sauce with a Latin accent
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Chefs Felipe Donnelly and Carolina Santos-Neves of Còmodo restaurant in New York's Soho neighborhood came up with this Bolognese sauce after one of their prep cooks made family meal using leftover chile rellenos that were chopped up and added to pasta.

Since then, the dish has been featured on the menu every night—and it's one of their most popular. You might be smitten with the rich, peppery sauce, too.

To learn more, read, "New Age Bolognese."

Poblano Bolognese Pasta

Recipe adapted from Comodo, New York, NY

Yield: 4 servings

Prep Time: 20 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour and 40 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours


2 medium carrots, roughly chopped

1 medium yellow onion, roughly chopped

1 stalk celery, roughly chopped

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

¾ pound ground beef chuck

1 cup dry white wine

One 14-ounce can whole tomatoes, undrained, crushed using your hands

3 bay leaves

2 teaspoons nutmeg

3 sprigs thyme

Salt and pepper, to taste

1 ½ pounds fresh fettuccine

3 tablespoons butter

2 garlic cloves, minced

1 poblano pepper, finely chopped

½ cup heavy cream

3 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated


1. Place the carrot, onion and celery in a food processor and pulse until the vegetables have completely broken down. Transfer to a medium bowl and set aside.

2. In a large heavy-bottomed pot over medium heat, add 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. When the oil is hot, add the beef and cook, stirring until the beef has browned and fat has rendered, about 15 minutes. Transfer the meat to a plate and pour any excess grease out of the pot.

3. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil to the pot and place over medium heat. Add the minced vegetables and cook, stirring occasionally, until the vegetables have softened, about 15 minutes. Add the wine and reduce by half, about 10 minutes. Add the reserved beef to the pot, along with the tomatoes, bay leaves, nutmeg and thyme. Season with salt and pepper and simmer, covered (leaving the lid ajar) until the flavors have melded and the sauce's texture becomes velvety, about 1 hour. Remove and discard the bay leaves and thyme.

4. While the sauce is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 2 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking water.

5. Meanwhile, add the butter to a large sauté pan over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant, about 30 to 40 seconds. Add the poblano peppers and cook until just slightly blistered, about 2 minutes. Add the Bolognese sauce, reserved cooking water and cream and reduce for 2 minutes. Add the pasta and toss with the sauce until the pasta is well-coated, about 3 minutes. Sprinkle Parmigiano-Reggiano over the pasta and serve. Make ahead: Cool and refrigerate the sauce for up to 4 days.

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