A ragu alla bolognese recipe to provoke debate | Kitchen sink tales | Life and style | The Guardian
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, finely chopped
1 carrot, finely chopped
1 celery stalk, finely chopped
50g pancetta or unsmoked bacon, diced
1 bay leaf
200g minced beef
200g minced pork
50g chicken livers (optional)
200ml red or white wine
1 tbsp tomato puree dissolved in 150ml warm water or chicken stock
Salt and black pepper
150ml whole milk
500g fettuccine, tagliatelle or pappardelle
6 tbsp freshly grated parmesan
1 In a large, heavy-based saucepan or deep saute pan with a lid, heat the butter and olive oil, add the vegetables, pancetta and bay leaves and cook over a low heat until soft and fragrant.
2 Increase the heat slightly and crumble the meat into the pan.
Cook, stirring pretty continuously, until the meat has lost all of it’s colour and browned evenly.
Add the wine, let it evaporate for a couple of minutes, then add the tomato.
Simmer, uncovered, over a low heat for 30 minutes, by which time the sauce should have deepened in colour and have very little liquid.
Add a good pinch of salt, lots of black pepper and a little of the milk.
Cook slowly, covered, for another hour, every so often lifting the lid and adding the milk until it is used up.
The sauce should be rich, and thick, with very little liquid, but not dry, so keep an eye on it.
3 Warm a serving bowl.
Cook the pasta in plenty of well-salted water until al dente.
Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta cooking water, and tip into the warm bowl.
Sprinkle over half the cheese, the sauce, a little of a pasta cooking water and toss carefully, lifting the pasta from below with two spoons.
If it seems a little dry, cautiously add more pasta cooking water, toss again and serve, passing round the rest of the grated parmesan.