the chase for a ragu


that pappardelle at trullo has given me determination to create my very own rich ragu. this first try wasn’t too bad, though the wine and canned tomatoes created an acidity that I didn’t really want here. next time I’m going to get passata and a mellower red wine – asking for help instead of wandering around the wine aisles trying to guess at what would work.

if you’d like to try it out, here are directions:

finely dice two carrots, two celery stalks, three medium onions and three medium garlic cloves for a giant batch of mirepoix, which you sweat for 15 minutes till they’re soft and sweet. don’t brown them as you want it fresh and sweet! season your cut of beef – I used brisket here but will probably try shin or cheek next time – generously, and throw it into the sweating vegetables together with a bottle of red and a can of chopped tomatoes.

bring it to a boil, and simmer for four hours or until it looks tender enough to flake – I used a cartouche here so I wouldn’t need to check it too often. grab your beef out, flake it and mix it back into the liquid and serve up on your favourite pasta! I wilted some spinach – without seasoning – as it went well with the very intense-tasting sauce.

a gremolata is suggested here, and I can see why, but we aren’t into such fanciness so the spinach helped with lifting the flavours of the ragu.

update: pooh about the acidity! I left it overnight in the fridge, and it’s mellowed out, and is so incredibly tasty. I’m dreaming of this over couscous for dinner tomorrow.

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