ragù alla bolognese
This is your basic meat sauce for spaghetti if you live in North America. Its name is related to the French ragoût
but it's a very different dish.
- 1 small tin of tomato paste (with as few additives as possible) for a thinner sauce use either a can of roma tomatoes or fresh diced roma tomatoes if the season is right.
- 1 lb ground meat (either beef or a combination of beef/pork/pancetta)
- 1/4 c dry white wine
- 1/2 c cream (or milk if that's what you've got)
- 1 clove garlic, crushed
- 1-2 tbsp butter
- Grated parmigiano reggiano to taste
- sea salt and pepper
- Prepare the battuto by cutting the listed vegetables in a fine dice. sneff provides excellent instructions here if you need some guidance.
- To a sauce pan on medium high heat add the butter (cut into small pieces) and the garlic
- Stir the garlic around until the butter is melted and the garlic is just beginning to colour lightly
- Discard the garlic and add to the pan your battuto(magically transformed to a soffritto). Mix the soffritto well making sure to coat all of the vegetable pieces with the butter
- Allow the vegetables to cook down until they begin to colour lightly, stir occasionally to prevent burning
- Thoroughly mix in the ground meat and allow the mixture to cook down a bit as above. Season with salt and pepper, cook with your nose. You'll know there's enough salt and pepper when it starts smelling tasty.
- If you are using tomato paste mix the tomato paste with the white wine and stir it into the pot. Otherwise add the tomatoes and wine mixing well.
- Cook away the alcohol (it'll stop smelling strongly of wine) and stir in the milk
- Turn the heat down to low and simmer. At least an hour or so. Longer wouldn't hurt if you can spare the time.
- Stir in grated parmesan cheese and taste for seasoning
To serve toss with your favourite pasta (tagliatelle
for example), and top with more shredded cheese. This will serve between 6-8 people.