Nino Zoccali from Pendolino and La Rosa restaurants in Sydney shares his ragu recipe.
RECIPE: Ragu Bolognese
Serves 6 (with 600g good quality dried spinach and egg tagliatelle)
70ml extra virgin olive oil
1 celery stalk, finely diced
1 medium carrot, finely diced
1 medium brown onion, finely diced
1 bay leaf, torn
1 garlic clove, finely diced
fine sea salt, to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste
200g mince (ground) pork
200g mince (ground) veal
130g prosciutto trimmings, finely chopped (see note)
100ml dry red wine
200ml good-quality tomato
passata (pureed tomatoes)
1tbsp tomato paste (concentrated puree)
200ml beef stock
Heat the extra virgin olive oil and butter in a big saucepan and saute the vegetables, bay leaf and garlic over medium heat until tender. Season with the sea salt and black pepper. Add the pork mince, veal mince and prosciutto to the pan. Cook over high heat, stirring continuously, until the meat has broken down into small pieces. Continue to cook, stirring until the meat is well browned and the juices have evaporated.
Stir in the wine and cook until it has also evaporated. Add the tomato passata, tomato paste and beef broth and bring to the boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer, cover and cook for two hours, stirring occasionally to prevent the sauce sticking to the pan. Once the sauce is cooked, remove from the saucepan and refrigerate until required.
Note: I like to use the short/shank end of the prosciutto for this because it is difficult to slice and often gets used in other recipes that require minced or chopped prosciutto.
To serve: In Bologna, meat sauces are almost exclusively served with fresh pasta made from egg, or spinach and egg. Sometimes, however, fresh egg pasta is dried and used for the same purpose. The texture is not quite as soft but it is still beautiful with the sauce. Dried egg pasta has become more and more popular because it is a quick and convenient way to have an egg pasta dish when you are time-poor and can't make your own pasta. Obviously, this sauce is wonderful with fresh spinach and egg pasta as well.