Sunday, 8 July 2012

Beef Ragu

There appears to be something quite sacred about Ragu, many families will guard their recipe with the utmost secrecy. Debate still rages today as to what a “True” Ragu should contain. In fact I’m sure I’ve committed some kind of Ragu heresy by adding tomatoes as it’s supposed to be a meat sauce.

If you love a good spag bol have a go at this, please don’t be put off by the cooking time, most of that is popping back into the kitchen for a quick stir

The beef, with a long slow cook, will literally fall apart into little fibres and the pork adds flavour brilliantly.

What I, Lisa, the kids and my friends like about this is the almost luxuriously rich and deep flavour. The beauty is that with such a strong flavour you don’t need much on a plate as it should be used sparingly against a larger amount of pasta. The pasta for Ragu purists is supposed to be tagliatelle but I’ve used spaghetti as Lisa insists on it.

Equally worth a mention is the low cost, this recipe here will probably feed around 12-14 people depending on their appetite of course. Just remember use the sauce sparingly. Fortunately it freezes really well. Go on have a go everyone will love it, honest Guv, just look

Cooking time 4 Hours

500g Cubed, Stewing, Braising, Blade or Skirt Steak
500g Minced Pork
500 ml of Beef Stock
2 Chicken livers chopped (lamb livers also work well)
2 Large onions diced
2 Carrots diced
1 Stick of celery finely chopped
3 cloves of Garlic finely chopped
2 Tins of Tomatoes
1/3 Bottle of red wine
Tablespoon of Tomato paste
Sprig of Rosemary finely chopped
3 sprigs of Thyme
Pinch of Chilli Flakes
80g Plain flour, seasoned

Dredge the beef through the flour covering all the pieces
In a big pan heat about a tablespoon of olive oil, and brown the beef. Once brown remove and put to one side.
Fry the onions for 2 mins, put the lid on and sweat for 5
Add the Garlic and fry for 1 min
Add the livers and fry gently for 3 mins
Add the Carrots and Celery then fry for another 2 mins
Add the Tomato Puree and cook for another 2 mins
Add the Minced pork fry, stirring all the time until brown
Add what’s left of the flour and fry for another min
Add the tomatoes, red wine sprigs of thyme (remember to remove at the end) and stock
Bring to the boil add the beef, rosemary and chilli flakes

Simmer very gently for 3-4 four hours, until the sauce is thick and the meat falls apart.
Taste and season if necessary, if it’s a little bitter, try adding ketchup or sugar or Worcestershire sauce.

Serve with pasta of your choice

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