Pappardelle in Red Wine Beef Ragu

On August 20, 2012, in Featured, Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Sunday night is always a special evening when it comes to cooking.  Not only is it the last evening before the work week where I can spend more time preparing and cooking a meal.  It is also a time to enjoy some twitter chat with fellow foodies on #SundaySupper chat. Tonight they were doing recipes made or paired with wines.  I had been planning on making a Korean beef dish with rice, but switched after seeing a Pappardelle dish my friend Chuck Hemann posted to his Facebook page yesterday and after noticing it was a wine theme on #SundaySupper.

Today’s Studio City Farmers’ Market had the pasta vendor there selling some freshly made Pappardelle noodles. There were also some amazingly beautiful organic local carrots too. In case you haven’t seen what a real carrot looks like; instead of all the perfectly colored and shaped carrots at the typical grocery store, here you go.

I modified a couple Pappardelle ragu recipes.  Most called for a combo or some version with beef, pork, veal and even ground boar.  I would’ve loved making something with all four, but I only had some grass-fed ground beef.  I also went with a California Red Wine blend that added a nice rich flavor to the ragu.

Pappardelle in Red Wine Beef Ragu
Serves 4

1 lb Pappardelle noodles
1 lb ground beef
2 cups red wine
1 cup vegetable broth
28 oz can of whole peeled San Marzano tomatoes
1/4 cup olive oil
1 carrot, diced small
1 medium onion, diced small
1 celery stalk, thinly sliced
2 garlic cloves, thinly slided
4 Sage leaves, finely chopped
1 teaspoon dried oregano
1 teaspoon dried basil
Salt & Pepper to taste

In a large stockpot add the olive oil and heat on medium-high until hot then add the ground beef.  Add the dried oregano, basil and some salt and pepper to taste mixing it into the ground beef in the pan.  Cook for about 5-7 minutes stirring often to evenly cook and get some browning of the meat. Set cooked beef aside in a separate dish.

Do not clean the stockpot and return to the heat adding the onion, carrot, celery, garlic and chopped sage. Cook on medium-high heat for a minute then cover and cook on low heat for another 7 minutes.  After vegetables have cooked return ground beef to pot.

Crush the canned tomatoes in a bowl with your hands.  Pour tomatoes into pot with vegetables. Add the red wine and vegetable stock. Heat the pot to a boil and then cover reducing heat to a simmer cooking for 1 1/2 hours.

In the final 20 minutes of cooking the ragu, start the water for your noodles.  When ready, add the Pappardelle noodles to the boiling water and cook accordingly. About 5 minutes for fresh and follow the directions on the package for dried noodles.

Serve with large shavings of Parmesan Reggiano cheese.

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Pappardelle with Leeks, Sugar Snap Peas and Lemon

On May 8, 2012, in Recipes, by Chris Baccus
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Here is a simple, light spring pasta dish that is a departure from the typical heavy red or cream sauce.

The sauce here is pretty light that is if you consider a half a stick of butter light? It might be better to say it tastes light.  The lemon, sugar snap peas, and leeks do give it a great color everything adheres to the pappardelle noodles nicely. I’m sure you’ll find this a good option among your pasta recipes.

I know we’ll make a few more times throughout the coming summer.

Pappardelle with Leeks, Sugar Snap Peas and Lemon
Serves 4

Coarse salt and ground pepper
½ stick unsalted butter
2 medium leeks (white and light green parts only), cut into thin half-moons and rinsed well
2 lemons
½ pound sugar snap peas, trimmed and cut in half crosswise
1 pound dried pappardelle noodles
½ cup fresh ricotta cheese
¾ cup Pecorino Romano, grated

Heat a large pot of lightly salted water for the pasta.  While that is getting to a boil, melt butter in a large pan over medium-high heat. Add the leeks and a small amount of salt, cooking the leeks until they soften for about 4 minutes. Reduce heat to medium and cook stirring occasionally for another 5 minutes. Turn off heat and finely grate lemon zest into skillet and add ground pepper.

When water is boiling add the snap peas and cook for 2 minutes. Remove from water but do not dispose of water.  Now add your pasta to the boiling water and cook per package instructions. Usually about 5-7 minutes for Pappardelle noodles.  Transfer noodles to pan, reserving some pasta water for the sauce.  Add sugar snap peas, ricotta and Pecorino cheese.  Add a few splashes of the pasta water to give it more of a sauce and coat the pasta then serve adding some more Pecorino Romano to each dish.

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