Saturday, January 30, 2010

Bravo Bravo

Last week, Gian Luca got a craving for his mother's Ragu. I know that no one can ever top a mother's sauce, so I asked for her recipe instead of trying my own. The result: an authentic meaty ragu that had us both reaching for seconds.

The ragu cooks low and slow so this recipe is not one to be made after a long day of work. But trust me, it is perfect to cook on these cold, snowy Saturdays when you want to stay home all day.
Luckily the recipe makes a lot of sauce so you can stock your freezer and whenever you get a craving for mamma's ragu ( or the almost equivalent) just defrost a bit, boil up some pasta and start dreaming of Italy.
I'm actually defrosting some right now...


Meat Ragu
( makes 4 quarts)

1 large yellow onion
2 carrots ( peeled)
4 stalks of celery
1/8 cup of extra virgin olive oil
1 pound ground beef
1 pound ground pork

2 tablespoons of tomato paste
1 cup red wine
1 32 oz can of tomato puree

1. Finely chop the onion, celery and carrots ( this can be done in a food processor). In a large saucepan, heat the olive oil and sautee the vegetables until lightly browned.

2. Add the ground beef and pork and lower the flame, allowing the meat to cook slowly. Break up the meat and stir occasionally. Allow the meat to cook through, (about 30 minutes).

3. Add the tomato paste and wine. Stir and allow to simmer for 10 minutes.

4. Add the tomato puree and allow the sauce to simmer for 1 hour - 1 1/2 hours.


  1. It looks perfect. I love the slow-cooking - the sauce is so beautifully flavored and intense. Seconds? What about thirds?

  2. I adore ragu!!!! It is a new favorite go-to meal. Tonight I am making wild boar ragu.... again;). Perfect with a juicy vino...

  3. Oh yum! Thanks for sharing this family recipe!

  4. Nothing beats a good ragu. It's homey, comforting, delicious and simple even when there are a few steps involved. The recipes always seem to double well and freeze beautifully. A little work and then you DO have something for a weeknight meal. Thank goodness for freezers, hmm?