A go-to meat sauce is an absolute must in my world. It’s one of those things I keep on hand in the freezer at all times so if I need a comforting / impressive / delicious meal, I pull out a Ragù alla Bolognese in like no time flat!
Like most things on What’s Gaby Cooking – this isn’t just any red sauce. It’s quite possibly the best combo ever as it’s a marriage of a Ragù sauce and a Béchamel sauce which gives it that extra creamy flavor and let’s be real here people, what isn’t better with a little cream sauce? It’s made with both ground beef and ground pork plus a giant glug of wine… so it’s a winner in my book. Not to mention it makes a whole vat of sauce! Which is perfect because I can stick half of it in the freezer for a rainy day when I am in a crunch for dinner!
Serve it up on a bed of pasta, a plate of gnocchi, on top of spaghetti squash… you name it! Skies the limit with this one. And it’s perfect for all that cold weather going on this time of year!
Ragù alla Bolognese
For the Béchamel
- 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
- 4 tablespoons flour
- 2 2/3 cups milk
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Freshly grated nutmeg to taste
For the Ragù
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 ounces pancetta finely chopped
- 1 medium onion minced
- 3 medium stalk celery with leaves minced
- 3 small carrot minced
- 10 ounces ground pork
- 10 oz ounces ground beef
- 2 ounce thinly sliced Prosciutto chopped
- 2/3 cup dry red wine
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 2 cups milk
- 3 cups canned plum tomatoes drained
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
Recommended for serving
- 1 lb gnocchi or pasta
- Torn burrata cheese
For the Béchamel
- In a large saucepan melt the butter over medium hight heat. Add the flour and cook, stirring with a whisk, for 3 minutes. Slowly add the milk, and whisk together. Add the grated nutmeg. Whisk and cook over medium heat for several minutes, until slightly thickened. Remove from heat and let cool.
For the Ragù
- Heat the olive oil in a 12 inch dutch oven over medium-high heat.
- Add the pancetta and chopped vegetables and sauté, stirring frequently with a wooden spoon, about 10 minutes.
- Add all the meats together, including the prosciutto. Stir into the pan and slowly brown over medium heat. Stir often with the wooden spatula and cook for about 15 minutes, or until the meats are a deep brown. Turn the contents of the skillet into a strainer and shake out the fat. Put them into the dutch oven and set over medium heat.
- Add the wine to the dutch oven, lowering the heat so the sauce bubbles quietly. Stir occasionally until the wine has reduced by half, about 3 minutes. Scrape up the brown bits as the wine bubbles.
- Stir ½ cup stock into the dutch oven and let it bubble slowly, 10 minutes, or until totally evaporated. Repeat with another ½ cup stock. Stir in the last 1/2 cup stock along with the milk. Adjust heat so the liquid bubbles very slowly. Partially cover the pot, and cook 1 hour. Stir frequently to check for sticking.
- Add the tomatoes, crushing them as they go into the pot. Cook uncovered, at a very slow bubble for another 45 minutes, or until the sauce resembles a thick, meaty stew. Season with salt and pepper.
- Lastly, add the Béchamel sauce into the meat sauce and combine with a wooden spoon until fully combined. Serve over pasta or gnocchi and serve with burrata cheese on top.