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Bolognese is one of the most legendary dishes in Italy. However, outside of Bologna, where can one eat a true Ragù? Well, if you follow this recipe any kitchen you choose. My parents came from Italy back in the 60’s, and settled in Brooklyn. As a result, My family and friends had the pleasure of eating some of the best homemade Italian food. These dishes of course, prepared by my Mom and sometimes Dad. Now, I share my fortune with you. Mangiare! (eat)
- 4 tablespoons butter (divided)
- 4 tablespoons oil (divided)
- 3 ounces pancetta or 3 ounces parma ham (prosciutto) or 3 ounces mortadella
- 2 lbs ground meat (beef chuck, veal and pork shoulder)
- 1 large onion
- 2 medium carrots
- 2 celery ribs
- 4 garlic cloves
- 4 chicken livers
- 1⁄2 cup dry white wine
- 2 cups whole milk (divided) or 1 cup cream 1 cup milk (divided)
- 2 lbs whole tomatoes, crushed or 2 lbs passata
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 pinch nutmeg
- salt and pepper, to taste at end
- Prepping makes the whole experience more enjoyable.
- Finely chop pancetta.
- Finely dice carrots, onions and celery.
- Wash livers carefully, then flatten livers and chop.
- Warm milk and chicken stock.
- Peel Garlic.
- In a Dutch oven over medium heat add 2 tbsp oil with 2 tbsp butter. Add the onions and sauté until the onions are soft, 8 – 10 minute. Do not brown.
- Add the remaining butter and olive oil.
- Add carrots and celery, increase heat to med-high, sauté until they start to brown.
- Add pancetta, prosciutto, mortadella or your choice of any combo of meats and sauté one to two minutes.
- Remove mixture from pan to a bowl and reserve.
- Add chicken liver and stir frequently 1 to 2 minutes.
- Add ground beef or meat blend and brown (do not stew meat, if you need to, do so in stages)
- Return vegetable mix to Dutch oven.
- Add tomato paste to meat and vegetable mix and brown paste for about 10-15 minute important step, develops deep flavor.
- Add wine to deglaze, allow it to evaporate 4 - 7 minutes.
- Add 1 cup warm milk and pinch nutmeg, allow it to come to a boil, carefully reduce milk for 3 - 5 minutes.
- Add passata or whole tomatoes crushed my hand or potato masher.
- Add chicken stock and whole garlic cloves stir. Cover and continue to cook for 3 to 4 hours over very low heat or place into oven at 275 for 3 to 4 hours, stirring occasionally.
- Several minutes before serving mash garlic cloves against wall of Dutch oven and add remaining milk continue to cook 10 minutes.