The ultimate Italian ragù (Bolognese sauce)

In Italy, ragù (Bolognese sauce), is one of the most used – and loved – pasta sauces.
Each Italian region has its own recipe and, within each region, the recipe even changes from family to family (and everyone claims that theirs is the best, of course!)

The only thing that never changes?
When you prepare it, you always make a little more, because the more you do, the better it tastes – and this is the reason why in every freezer, in an Italian home, you can always spot at least three jars of handmade ragù, ready to be taken out when needed.

Learn how to make ragù the Ruffoni way… with Giulia’s twist!

[[ recipeID=recipe-8kiyvhyhg, title=Ragù (Bolognese sauce) ]]

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Ragù (Bolognese sauce)

Servings: 8

Keywords: Italian sauce, Pasta, Pasta sauce

  • Prep Time: 30 mins
  • Cook Time: 3 hours 0 mins
  • Total Time: 3 hours 30 mins

Ingredients

  • 1 large braiser
  • 1 lb beef mince (80%)
  • ½ lb pork mince
  • ½ lb pork shoulder or a couple of spare ribs (optional)
  • 1 large onion
  • 2 carrots
  • 3 celery sticks
  • 2 sprigs rosemary
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 1 tbs tomato concentrate
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • 2 cans of finely chopped tomatoes (or about 8 fresh tomatoes)
  • 1 Parmigiano rind (optional)
  • EVO oil
  • salt
  • black pepper
  • Instructions

    1. In a large braiser (our Historia 6 qt braiser is perfect for this job), heat up a tbsp of EVOO and add pork mince. Cook on medium-high heat for a few minutes until the water has mostly evaporated and the meat is nicely browned, then remove from the pan and set aside.
    2. If the pork mince is fatty, there will be enough oil in the pan for the next step, otherwise add another 1 or 2 tbsp of EVOO. Add beef mince and brown for a few minutes, then remove and set aside with the pork. Lastly, cut up the pork shoulder in large chunks and brown for a couple of minutes.
    3. While the meats are browning, finely chop onion, carrots and celery.
    4. If there is a little fat remaining on the bottom of the pan, add another 1 or 2 tbsp of EVOO, then add the soffritto (mirepoix) and cook on low-medium heat for a few minutes until the vegetables have lost their rawness and are slightly golden (careful not to brown them).
    5. Add the clove of garlic you have smashed with the side of a knife — this is what we call aglio in camicia (dressed garlic) the best way to obtain a delicate bite, extracting the aromatic flavor of the garlic with none of the bitterness — tomato concentrate, bay leaves, and finely chopped rosemary leaves*, season with salt and pepper and cook for another minute.* PS: the incorporated chopped rosemary leaves are Giulia’s very own signature.You can follow her lead or proceed in a more traditional way (as Rita does) making a little bunch of rosemary, bay leaves, and sage and tying them with butcher's twine so they can easily be removed at the end of the process.
    6. Add the browned meats back in the pan, mix well, turn the heat up to med-high and pour in the wine to deglaze the pan. Let the alcohol evaporate before continuing.
    7. Add the chopped tomatoes (you can also buy whole canned tomatoes and chop them yourself!), the Parmigiano crust if using, cover and let simmer away gently for at least 1-1.5 hours – the longer the better! Check on it and stir occasionally, adding a little water or stock if it looks like it’s drying out too much.
    8. Remove and discard the parmigiano crust, then shred the whole pork pieces into a pulled pork consistency and mix them back in with the rest. 
    9. Check, adjust seasoning, enjoy... and don’t forget to freeze some!