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This extra cheesy bolognese bake is perfect for Sunday night cooking. Just heat and eat later in the week.

INGREDIENTS

  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 brown onion, finely chopped
  • 1 carrot, finely chopped
  • 1 celery stalk, finely chopped
  • 1 teaspoon fresh thyme leaves
  • 2 garlic cloves, crushed
  • 500g beef mince
  • 1/4 cup tomato paste
  • 400g can diced tomatoes
  • 1 cup Massel beef stock
  • 1 1/2 cups cooked long-grain white rice
  • 4 eggs, lightly beaten
  • 2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley leaves, finely chopped
  • 200g packet grated perfect melt blend cheese (see note)
  • Fresh basil leaves, to serve
  • 120g mixed salad leaves, to serve

METHOD
Step 1
Heat oil in a large frying pan over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, celery and thyme. Cook, stirring, for 10 minutes or until vegetables soften. Add garlic and mince. Cook, breaking up with a wooden spoon, for 6 to 8 minutes or until browned.
Step 2
Add tomato paste, tomatoes and stock. Bring to the boil. Reduce heat to medium-low. Simmer, uncovered, for 20 minutes or until thickened. Set aside to cool for 10 minutes.
Step 3
Meanwhile, preheat oven to 200C/180C fan-forced. Combine rice, egg, parsley and 2/3 cup cheese in a large bowl. Add mince mixture. Stir to combine. Spoon into a 7cm-deep, 22cm x 28cm (10-cup-capacity) baking dish. Sprinkle with remaining cheese.
Step 4
Bake for 30 to 35 minutes or until golden and set. Stand for 10 minutes. Top with basil and serve with salad leaves.

TIP: We used a three-cheese blend containing colby, gouda and parmesan. You could use grated pizza cheese instead. Prepare in advance: Make steps 1 and 2 of the recipe. Cool. Spoon into an airtight container and keep in the fridge for up to 2 days.


Recipe by: Author: Liz Macri Image credit: Guy Bailey & Andrew Young Publication: Super Food Ideas and Taste.com