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Fettucine with Ragu alla Bolognese

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Serves 4 to 6

Yields about 1 quart of ragu

  • by from Fine Cooking
    Issue 113

In historically wealthy Emilia-Romagna, ragù is made from a combination of ground meats—beef, veal, and pork—and enriched with milk and cream. Ragù alla Bolognese, which originated in Bologna, in the heart of the region, is a perfectly delicious example. In this version, mortadella, a smoked beef and pork sausage, brings even more rich flavor to the pot.

  • 2 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 Tbs. unsalted butter
  • 2 medium carrots, finely chopped
  • 2 medium celery stalks, finely chopped
  • 2 medium cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 large yellow onion, finely chopped
  • 1 Tbs. minced fresh flat-leaf parsley
  • 1 lb. ground beef
  • 1/2 lb. ground pork
  • 1/2 lb. ground veal
  • 1 cup dry white wine, such as Soave Classico
  • Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
  • Kosher or fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 3 Tbs. tomato paste
  • 1-1/2 cups lower-salt beef broth
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 3 oz. thinly sliced mortadella, cut into 1/4-inch-wide strips (1/2 cup)
  • 1 lb. regular or spinach fettucine
  • Freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano, for serving (optional)
Make the ragu

Heat the oil and butter in a 5- to 6-quart Dutch oven or other heavy-duty pot over medium heat until the butter melts and begins to sizzle. Stir in the carrots, celery, garlic, onion, and parsley. Reduce the heat to medium low and cook, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft and light golden, about 10 minutes. Add the beef, pork, and veal and mix well with a wooden spoon or spatula to break up the clumps. Cook, stirring frequently and scraping the bottom of the pot until the meat is deep brown and crumbly but still tender and not dry, 60 to 90 minutes—if the meat is browning too quickly, reduce the heat to low.
 

Raise the heat to high, stir in the wine and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan until it is almost evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Reduce the heat to medium and season the meat with the nutmeg, 1/2 tsp. salt, and several grinds of pepper. Stir in the milk and cook, stirring frequently, until most of it is absorbed, 2 to 3 minutes.

Dilute the tomato paste in a small bowl with a splash of the broth and pour it into the sauce. Mix well and then add the remaining broth. Reduce the heat to low, cover partially, and cook the sauce at a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally, until it is thick and fragrant and the vegetables have more or less dissolved, 1 to 1-1/2 hours. Stir in the cream and mortadella and simmer gently until completely heated through, about 5 minutes more. Season to taste with salt and pepper.

Cook the pasta and serve
Tip:
Resist the urge to rush the meat through browning—it takes 60 to 90 minutes to do this step properly, but your patience will be rewarded with a rich, deeply flavored sauce.

When ready to serve, bring a large pot of well salted water to a boil. Cook the pasta until al dente—you want it to still have some bite because it will continue to cook a bit while you’re tossing it with the ragù. Reserve about 1 cup of the cooking water and then drain the pasta. Return it to the pot and toss it with some of the ragù, adding a little cooking water if it seems dry. Serve the pasta with more ragù spooned over the top, garnished with freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Pecorino Romano, if you like.

Make Ahead Tips

The ragù can be refrigerated in an airtight container for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 3 months. Reheat it gently before tossing it with pasta.

Variations

While fresh spinach fettucine is the classic pasta paring for this sauce, you can subsitute regular fettucine or tagliatelle.

nutrition information (per serving):
Calories (kcal): 500, Fat (kcal): 30, Fat Calories (g): 270, Saturated Fat (g): 13, Protein (g): 40, Monounsaturated Fat (g): 12, Carbohydrates (mg): 11, Polyunsaturated Fat (mg): 2, Sodium (g): 500, Cholesterol (g): 145, Fiber (g): 2,

Photo: Scott Phillips

Wow--this rates high on the YUM scale! Prepared it as recommended. Subtle flavors, but not boring!

Perfect recipe! I browned the meat for the maximum time and simmered the ragu at also the maximum time. Try the other ragu recipe with pork shoulder and Italian sausage.

Fabulous, a knock-out but you have to be willing to send the time, especially the 60 to 90 minutes browning the meat to a deep brown. The mortadella was a great addition and it went well with a freshly made spinach fettucine.

Meh. I followed this recipe "exactly". Spending the extra money for the various ingredients, and spending about 5 hours cooking it just as described. I wish it had been worth the effort. It was just okay.

Delicious!!! This is EXACTLY how they make it in Italy! My husband and I couldn't help but reminisce about our trip to Tuscany.....

127703ContentMarcus Samuelsson/moveablefeast/authors/samuelsson-marcus/ Marcus Samuelsson Marcus Samuelsson (Select) us Marcus Samuelsson brought the art of Scandinavian cooking to New York long before the recent Nordic craze. As executive chef at New York’s Aquavit (from 1995 to 2010), the Ethiopian-born Swede (who graduatedMarcus SamuelssonMarcus Samuelsson(Select)usMarcus Samuelsson brought the art of Scandinavian cooking to New York long before the recent Nordic craze. As executive chef at New York’s Aquavit (from 1995 to 2010), the Ethiopian-born Swede (who graduated from the Culinary Institute in Gothenburg, Sweden, and apprenticed in Switzerland, Austria, and France) turned an entire city on to gravlax and herring, giving Swedish cuisine a modern, luxurious turn, and receiving three stars from the New York Times in the process. In 1999, he was James Beard’s “Rising Star Chef,” and in 2003 the “Best Chef,” New York City.The awards just kept on coming, as Samuelsson branched out with Japanese restaurant Riingo. He received consecutive four-star ratings in Forbes’ annual All-Star Eateries feature, was named one of the 40 under 40 by Crain’s, and was hailed one of The Great Chefs of America by the Culinary Institute of America. And in 2009 he planned and executed the Obama administration’s first state dinner for the first family, Prime Minister Singh of India, and 400 of their guests. He has been a UNICEF ambassador since 2000, focusing his advocacy on water and sanitation issues, specifically the Tap Project.Samuelsson took uptown Manhattan by storm with his Red Rooster Harlem, a spirited neighborhood place where the menu has his renowned Swedish meatballs (with lingonberries, of course) alongside fish and grits, and jerk chicken with yucca. Downstairs, sister venue Ginny’s Supper Club brings live jazz, cocktails, and Samuelsson’s food together until the wee hours. And now he’s brought his blend of cooking and culture to Lincoln Center, with American Table Café and Bar at Alice Tully Hall, and his casual burger joints, Marc Burger to Costa Mesa, California, and Chicago. Back in his native Sweden, Samuelsson has launched American Table Brasserie and Bar, in Stockholm, Norda Bar & Grill, in Gothenburg, and Kitchen and Table, in Uppsala. Among his many TV appearances, Samuelsson is a judge on The Taste (now in its third season), was the winner on Bravo’s Top Chef Masters Season 2, as well as the winner of the second season of Chopped All-Stars. He is also the author of cookbooks Aquavit: And the New Scandinavian Cuisine (2003), The Soul of a New Cuisine: A Discovery of the Foods and Flavors of Africa (2006), New American Table (2009)and the 2012 memoir Yes, Chef, which was also nominated for a James Beard Foundation award.NoneNoneCourtesy of Marcus SamuelssonStandardNoneNoneNone1/1/0001 12:00:00 AM1/9/2016 1:05:47 AM1/1/0001 12:00:00 AMKateSheelyMarcus Samuelsson88O10331/9/2016 01:05:47 AMArchive_Expire/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/moveablefeast/authors/samuelsson-marcus/10/30/2013 11:09:06 AMChefFree Content127115ContentPete Evans/moveablefeast/authors/evans-pete/ Pete Evans Pete Evans (Select) us Pete Evans is an award-winning Australian chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and TV host. Born in Melbourne and raised on Australia’s beautiful Gold Coast, Pete is not your average chef—he’s also an avid fisherman, surfer,Pete EvansPeteEvans(Select)usPete Evans is an award-winning Australian chef, restaurateur, cookbook author, and TV host. Born in Melbourne and raised on Australia’s beautiful Gold Coast, Pete is not your average chef—he’s also an avid fisherman, surfer, cookbook author, and television personality.   Pete’s food career began at the tender age of 19 when, with brother Dave, he opened their first restaurant, The Pantry, in Melbourne’s bayside suburb of Brighton in 1993. It quickly became a favorite spot and found devoted fans among city locals, celebrities, and critics alike. Since then, Pete has opened six award-winning restaurants, written seven best-selling cookbooks, including the Australian barbecue bible My Grill. He has hosted television shows in Australia for the past decade, and in 2012, his series My Kitchen Rules pulled an audience of more than 3.5 million, making it one of the most-watched shows of the year in Australia. Moveable Feast with Fine Cooking will be his first television series in the U.S.NoneNonePhoto courtesy of Pete EvansStandardNoneNoneNone1/1/0001 12:00:00 AM11/4/2013 10:50:52 AM1/1/0001 12:00:00 AMKateSheelyPete Evans78A103311/4/2013 10:50:52 AMArchive_Expire/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/moveablefeast/authors/evans-pete/8/9/2013 11:26:13 AMChefFree Content101664ContentJonathan Waxman/moveablefeast/authors/waxman-jonathan/ Jonathan WaxmanJonathanWaxman(Select)usThe trajectory of chef Jonathan Waxman’s career is similar to the way the New York Times described his West Coast–style restaurant Jams: “a culinary comet.” That was in 1984, and Waxman’s cooking has never failed to set off sparks. Lively and very Italian, Barbuto, Waxman’s West Village restaurant (opened in 2004), with its wood-fired oven, housemade pasta, and silky seafood, is like a profile of the chef himself. Called “the Eric Clapton of chefs” by L.A. restaurant critic Jonathan Gold, Waxman (a two-time Top Chef Masters contestant) brings the riffs of his California days with Alice Waters at Berkeley’s Chez Panisse, and at Michael’s in L.A. There, in the 1970s, after graduating from La Varenne cooking school in Paris, Waxman was one of the pioneers creating a new American way of cooking, with a reverence for the seasonal and for the vast resources right in our own backyard. Along the way, Esquire magazine named him one of the most influential Americans, for all that he’s contributed to the culinary world.Taking his act to the East Coast, with Jams (where Julia Child was a fan), and later with Washington Park (opened in 2002), Waxman always held fast to the new American ideal of impeccable sourcing and inventive thinking, which continues at Barbuto, and at 2014 launches Montecito (in Toronto, a co-venture with film director Ivan Reitman), Adele’s, in Nashville’s Gulch neighborhood, and his upcoming New York place within 1 Hotels Central Park.Waxman has written cookbooks A Great American Cook (2007), and Italian, My Way (2011), and is also a prime player in the nonprofit Citymeals-on-Wheels fundraising events. NoneNoneCourtesy of Jonathan WaxmanStandardNoneNoneNone1/1/0001 12:00:00 AM1/28/2015 4:53:09 PM1/1/0001 12:00:00 AMRobynAitkenJonathan Waxman90A10331/28/2015 04:53:09 PMArchive_Expire/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/WorkArea/images/application/spacer.gif/moveablefeast/authors/waxman-jonathan/8/11/2008 4:27:48 PMChefFree Content102Moveable Feast Widget

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