Rigatoni Bolognese

by Joe Lambert on January 26, 2010

Rigatoni Bolognese #4

Now, this is really gonna be fun.  Comfort food at its finest.  Look at that photo for just a second or two.  I see a meat sauce so luxurious my mouth starts to water.  It’s so inviting to wrap yourself around the anticipation of a really good bolognese.  What I didn’t realize was, that given the care and love that goes into the preparation of a bolognese, people can get very passionate about their dedication to bolognese.  I’ve had the Rigatoni Bolognese at Gabrielle’s a number of times, and I am always totally satisfied with my choice.  I’m continually impressed with its richness and cozy flavors.  Flavors that can wrap themselves around you and send you peacefully on your way.  And, who doesn’t need a little peace now and then.

Here’s a little proof of just how much this dish can satisfy.  As I sit here in Starbucks writing this post, Margaret Morgan , a friend and frequent visitor to Gabrielles, walks up to say hello.  When she looks over my shoulder and sees what it is I’m doing, she smiles instantly, agrees Chef J’s bolognese is in fact extraordinary, and plans to grab another friend later, Jim Eastland, and make arrangements to get to Gabs soon for this meaty delight.  So, if you can, please do yourself the favor of trying this dish at Gabrielle’s.  If you can’t get to the restaurant, on some lazy afternoon open a nice bottle of wine and give this recipe a try.  Oh yeah, it takes a little time to prepare.  But, I’m sure you’ll agree, the time spent will be well worth it.

Rigatoni Bolognese

makes 6 servings

  • 1 lb. ground pork
  • 1 lb. gound beef
  • 2 medium carrots chopped
  • 2 stalks of celery  chopped
  • 2 medium onions chopped
  • 3 cloves of garlic finely chopped
  • 1 cup of Madera wine
  • 1 cup of red wine
  • 2 Herbox bouillon cubes
  • 28 oz can of whole plum tomatoes
  • parmesan cheese
  • olive oil

Ricotta Cheese Topping

makes 2 servings

  • 1 tsp. lemon juice
  • 4 Tbls. ricotta cheese
  • 1/4 tsp. chopped chives
  • basil oil

If you happen to have bacon fat available start off by heating 2 tablespoons in a large dutch oven over a medium high heat.  Olive oil is fine if you don’t have bacon fat. Saute’ the garlic and onion until the onions have softened and become translucent.  Add the carrots and celery and saute’ for about 5-6 minutes.  Add the beef and pork and season with salt and pepper.  Cook the beef and pork until it is no longer pink. Add the madera and the red wine and reduce by 3/4 over a medium high heat.  You want almost all of the liquid to be absorbed or cooked down.  In 3 quarts of water dissolve the bouillon and add to the meat mixture.  Again reduce until nearly all the liquid has been cooked down, stirring frequently. Add the can of plum tomatoes breaking them  into small pieces. Again cook  the liquids down until nearly all has been absorbed.  In the restaurant this bolognese is made in very large quantities and reheated.  You can make a larger batch by simply using more of all the ingredients, maintaining the ratios. The final touch in the restaurant coincides with this reheating process.  At home you can spoon a serving or two into a skillet.  Add 2 Tbls. of marinara, a healthy pinch of chives, scallions and basil, 1 tps. of parmesan cheese and 1/4 cup of chicken stock and quickly cook down the liquids. Prepare the ricotta cheese mixture by stirring together  1 teaspoon of lemon juice,  4 Tbls. of ricotta cheese and 1/4 tps. of  finely chopped chives. The meat mixture is then topped with the ricotta cheese mixture and finished with a drizzle of basil oil on the cheese mixture. Rigatoni is the pasta currently used by Chef J because the noodle holds the meat sauce both outside, as well as inside, the pasta tube. You could also use Fusilli or Pappadalle.  Enjoy immensely.

Rigatoni Bolognese #5

  • Share/Bookmark

Leave a Comment

Previous post:

Next post: