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Category: Main courses

Ragu alla Napoletana

About 15 years ago, traveling along the Italian Riviera, I'd had all I could take of the brave new Italian foods I had just discovered: walnut cream sauce and sun-dried tomatoes and gnocchi and fresh mozzarella. (Well, they were new ... Read more

Total time: 45 minutes, plus 2 1/2 hours simmering time | Serves 6 to 8
Note: Adapted from "Italian Slow and Savory" by Joyce Goldstein.
  • 1/3 cup olive oil
  • 1 1/2 pounds beef brisket or chuck, cut into 3 equal pieces
  • 1/2 pound boneless veal shoulder, in one piece
  • 1/2 pound boneless pork shoulder, in one piece
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 1/2 cup dry red wine
  • 2 (28-ounce) cans plum tomatoes with juices, chopped or pulsed in a food processor
  • Pinch of chile pepper flakes
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 pound ziti
  • Grated pecorino cheese

Step 1In a large Dutch oven or deep skillet, heat the olive oil over high heat. Add the beef, veal and pork and sprinkle with salt. Cook for about 15 minutes, turning occasionally. Add the onion and cook, stirring occasionally, until the onion is golden and the meats are browned on all sides, about 15 minutes more.

Step 2Add the wine and cook until it evaporates, about 10 minutes. Add the tomatoes and chile pepper flakes and simmer, stirring often, for 2 1/2 hours, or until the sauce is thick enough to coat the back of the spoon and the meat is tender.

Step 3Use a slotted spoon to remove the meat from the sauce. Reserve for another dish, serve the meat separately as a second course or chop the meat and return it to the sauce. Season with salt and pepper and toss the pasta with the sauce. Top with grated cheese and pass more cheese at the table.

Each serving (with pasta and meat):
553 calories; 40 grams protein; 55 grams carbohydrates; 5 grams fiber; 18 grams fat; 4 grams saturated fat; 100 mg. cholesterol; 369 mg. sodium.
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