Sunday, November 21, 2010

Spaghetti Rigati Bolognese

This Balognese style pasta is so very rich!
     This recipe is the most authentic Bolognese preparation that I know of.  Bolognese sauce is not simply a sugo de carne (meat sauce) that has cream added to it.  This sauce is never prepared ahead of time.
     There are five different meats in this recipe and one of them is chicken liver.  Another meat ingredient is pancetta.  Pancetta is a dry cured Italian bacon.  Pork, beef and veal are the other three meats. 
     Nutmeg is a key spice in this sauce.  The nutmeg and chicken liver flavors combine to give this sauce a hint of a rich pate flavor.  All of the meats should be minced by hand and not ground for a true Bolognese Sauce.
     Spaghetti Rigati is a ribbed spaghetti and it picks up the sauce very well.
     Recipe:  Heat a saute pan over medium heat.
     Add a splash of olive oil.
     Add 2 cloves of finely chopped garlic.
     Add a small handful of minced celery.
     Add a small handful of minced carrot.
     Add a small handful of minced onion.
     When the vegetables are cooked tender, add one whole chicken liver.
     Add a small handful of finely chopped pancetta.
     Add a small handful of finely chopped portabella mushroom.
     Saute the mixture, till the vegetables are cooked soft.
     Remove the partially cooked chicken liver and fine chop it. 
     Return the chopped chicken liver to the pan.
     Add a small handful each of finely minced pork, beef and veal. 
     Saute till the meats are cooked but not brown in color.
     Add a splash of virgin olive oil.
     Add a peeled and seeded diced fresh plum tomato.
     Add 1 cup of canned imported Italian crushed plum tomato.
     Simmer and stir for ten minutes over medium heat.
     Add a splash of dry red wine.
     Add a splash of veal stock.
     Add 2 pinches of ground sage.
     Add 1 pinch of basil.
     Add 1 pinch of oregano.
     Add 1 pinch of marjoram.
     Add 2 pinches of ground nutmeg.
     Add sea salt and black pepper.
     Simmer for another 5 minutes.
     Add 2 pinches of chopped fresh parsley.
     Add a splash of cream.
     Add a small handful of freshly grated parmesan cheese.
     Stir the sauce well, till the ingredients combine.
     Simmer and reduce the sauce till it becomes a medium thick consistency.
     Add a portion of al dente cooked spaghetti rigati pasta. 
     Toss the sauce and pasta together. 
     Use a chef's fork to plate the pasta. 
     Pour any remaining sauce over the pasta.
     Garnish with parsley sprigs and shaved fresh parmesan cheese.
     This bolognese is a true authentic Italian recipe.  The flavor of this sauce is phenomenally rich! 
     I noticed that many bolognese sauce recipes omit the chicken liver and nutmeg due to personal taste or fear that the sauce would be not as well liked.  The small amount of chicken liver and nutmeg combine to give this sauce an overtone of rich pate flavor.  Organ meat is very popular in some Italian regions, especially Balogna. 
     The fine chopped mirepoix vegetables are essential to the flavor in this sauce.  The mushrooms add more depth to the flavor.  The light sage flavor is required in a bolognese Sauce.
     Bolognese is one of the most popular and very best of Italian pasta sauces!  Don't settle for a meat sauce with cream that a second rate chef may try to pass off as a Bolognese Sauce.  There is only one truly authentic Bolognese recipe and this is it!  My first five years of chef apprenticeship was done in regional Italian fine dining restaurants.  I have respect for tradition when I cook Italian food.  An Italian Chianti or a French 2005 Chateau Fonguillon Montagne Saint-Emilion Bordeaux is perfect with this pasta.  Ciao Baby! ... Shawna

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