Ragu bolognese sauce in Italian is ragu alla bolognese, which is a meat based sauce originating from the area of Bologna, Italy. Sitting down to a bowl of this brings visions of a sweet Italian grandma simmering up a batch for her loved ones, eating it just makes you feel good.
Genuine ragù alla bolognese is a slowly cooked sauce with ingredients such as wine, tomatoes, celery, onions and meat. The earliest documented recipe of an Italian meat-based sauce served with pasta comes from late 18th century city of Imola, near Bologna. Many variations have sprung from the original. Today it is customarily served with tagliatelle, made with eggs and northern Italy’s soft wheat flour. I like to use Montana Gold soft wheat when I make my pasta but as you can tell in a pinch (moment of laziness on my part) an acceptable alternatives to fresh tagliatelle can include broad flat pasta shapes such as fettuccine or plain spaghetti noodles. To me it’s really about the sauce and the smell of it simmering all afternoon that makes this dish special.
For a delicious bread to go along with your Ragu Bolognese be sure and try my Italian Cheesy Pull Apart Bread. It’s sure to be a hit with your family and friends.
- 4 tablespoons butter
- ⅓ cup finely chopped hard salami
- 1 large carrot, finely chopped
- 2 celery stalk, finely chopped
- 1 medium size onion, finely chopped
- 1 tablespoon of minced garlic
- 1 pound very lean veal or beef
- 1 cup of good quality dry red wine
- 1 14oz can beef broth
- 4 oz can tomato paste
- Salt and pepper
- To make the ragu, heat the butter in a large pan, add the salami, carrot, garlic, celery and onion and fry gently for about 10 minutes.
- Add the beef or veal and stir with a wooden spoon to break it up into smaller crumbly pieces as it cooks.
- Cook for about 15 minutes to brown the meat, then add the wine.
- Stir in the beef stock and tomato paste being sure to stir until a smooth sauce is achieved.
- Allow to simmer for 2 hours on very low heat.
- If the sauce seems to thick while cooking add a little more beef stock to obtain a smooth consistency.
- Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Serve over al dente pasta topping with a good quality finely grated asiago cheese