Sunday, January 4, 2015

Pappardelle alla Bolognese





As I mentioned in my profile, I am an Italian wannabe and my favorite thing to cook is Italian food.  Is it any surprise then that my youngest son, Benjamin's, deemed my "mini-me", favorite dish is also one of his favorite Italian words to say?  He particularly loves ordering it at restaurants and has the perfect inflection when he does..."Pappardelle alla Bolognese por favore"....(insert tears in my eyes of a proud Pappa).  Ok, enough of why I had to make this and on to making it!!!!


As with any good Italian meal, you must first start by pouring a glass of wine for the chef.  My favorite wine is Brunello but in this case I am having a nice glass of Carbernet by Nobile called "337".  Brunello is pricey but worth it and this 337 is a great every day wine.  I will also be cooking with some of this wine (and yes it was like Sophie's Choice deciding whether to actually put it in the dish or have another glass for myself!). 

Ok, now that we have taken care of the chef, let's start cooking!  In a dutch oven, pour the olive oil in and then add the sausage and ground chuck and brown the meat over medium high heat, breaking the meat up into large chunks in the process.

Next, chop up your veggies and garlic so you have your mise en place ready to go.  When everything is ready and the meat is brown, add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the dutch oven and cook for about 15 minutes.
 

Next, even though it breaks your heart, it is time to part with your beloved wine!  Pour the wine into the pot and watch it soak merrily into all the meat and veggies (insert chorus of angels singing). 

Next add the crushed tomatoes, chicken stock, chopped basil and salt and cook for 2-3 minutes. 
Then add the Italian seasoning (rubbing between your two palms into the pot to break up the herbs), the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.  Stir and cook for another few minutes.


Then pour in the milk and stir to combine.  Once the sauce starts to boil, reduce to a low flame and simmer for 60-90 minutes with a lid partially on.

When the 90 minutes is up, boil your water for your pappardelle and cook according to directions to al dente texture (about 1-2 minutes less than stated on directions). 

Once done, and without straining from the pasta water, scoop the pappardelle noodles directly out of the pasta water and into the dutch oven with the sauce and add 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta water from the pappardelle noodles into the Bolognese sauce. 

Stir everything to combine and continue to cook for a few minutes longer.  Give it one last stir and then plate the pasta and sauce in a mound on the plate and shower it with Italian cheese (I like a blend of parmigiano reggiano, pecorino-romano).  Serve immediately with your favorite red wine and garlic bread and just try not to moan and groan as you eat it!  It is pure heaven on a plate!  Mangia!!!

PAPPARDELLE ALLA BOLOGNESE:
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
1 lb hot Italian sausage (removed from casings)
1 lb ground chuck beef
1 large whole onion, diced and chopped
1 stalk of celery, finely chopped including leafy top
1 large carrot or two small, finely chopped
5 cloves of garlic smashed and finely chopped
1 cup red wine
1 tablespoon Italian seasoning
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon cloves
32 oz can crushed Italian tomatoes
1 cup chicken stock, unsalted
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1 cup milk
1 pound pappardelle noodles
Italian cheese, grated

In a dutch oven, pour the olive oil in and then add the sausage and ground chuck and brown the meat over medium high heat, breaking the meat up into large chunks in the process.

Next, chop up your veggies and garlic so you have your mise en place ready to go.  When everything is ready and the meat is brown, add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic to the dutch oven and cook for about 15 minutes.

Pour the wine into the pot and watch it soak merrily into all the meat and veggies.  Let cook for a few minutes and then add the crushed tomatoes, chicken stock, chopped basil and salt and cook for 2-3 minutes.  Then add the Italian seasoning (rubbing between your two palms into the pot to break up the herbs), the cinnamon, nutmeg and cloves.  Stir and cook for another few minutes.  Pour in the milk and stir to combine.  Once the sauce starts to boil, reduce to a low flame and simmer for 60-90 minutes with a lid partially on.

When the 90 minutes is up, boil your water for your pappardelle and cook according to directions to al dente texture (about 1-2 minutes less than stated on directions).  Once done, and without straining from the pasta water, scoop the pappardelle noodles directly out of the pasta water and into the dutch oven with the sauce and add 1/2 cup of the starchy pasta water from the pappardelle noodles into the Bolognese sauce.  Stir everything to combine and continue to cook for a few minutes longer.  Give it one last stir and then plate the pasta and sauce in a mound on the plate and shower it with Italian cheese (I like a blend of parmigiano reggiano, pecorino-romano).  Serve immediately with your favorite red wine and garlic bread and just try not to moan and groan as you eat it!

1 comment:

  1. I tried your recipe by replacing beef with chicken. It was so delicious. I also added a lot of garlic and ginger in it and that increased its taste.

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