Shredded Beef Ragu
GETTING OVER BOLOGNESE
PASTA FINALLY MET ITS RICHER MATE
I had my birthday over 6 months ago. Every day after that big day, I‘ve heard this little voice in my mind: Am I content? What’s next?
I feel this force that keeps hinting me to do something with my never idling creative mind, my able hands and my constant hunger for food. What is that? A “Midlife Hunger?” Can I even call it a crisis?
Well heck, I’m not sure what that is. However, I know for sure that I don’t feel like my youth has gone bye bye. I definitely don’t need a new car, a facelift or any type of make-over, or anything to do with ‘let’s fight the fact that “you’re starting to get old” idea’ — and darn it I can’t quit eating! 😀
Then it hit me, I want to do something that would stretch me beyond my comfort zone, to help me grow as a person. To be more present and “connected.” So what if I have a day job, a kid we drive 45 minutes each way to and from school, massive OCD, and not to mention I always pick up a second wind at 9 p.m.? (I move furniture and re-arrange rooms in the middle of the night because I just can’t get myself to sleep.) Yes you may ask, “You need to do something MORE?” … Does that even make sense? … Don’t answer.
So here I am, with you. Together, to fall into comfort. To live a purposeful life. To use our minds, hearts and body to create, to cook, and to gather around the table. To be comforted to know that we give our best for everything – for family and friends, for ourselves, and most of all for our Creator.
As the weather turns cooler and the leaves start to turn color, let’s head to our kitchen and try this recipe. This is beautiful comfort food served on a bed of pasta. Sprinkle any hard cheese you fancy. Parmigiana Reggiano is always my ‘go to’ cheese. Slow cooked & gently simmered in a pool of red wine – brings out the flavor of abundance and comfort. Topped with rosemary to round the taste. Savor.
- 2.5 lb flank steak, cut into 4 pieces
- plain (all-purpose) flour, for dusting
- ¼ cup (60ml) extra virgin olive oil
- 1 sweet yellow onion, sliced
- 3 cloves garlic, peeled
- 3 cup (250ml) dry red wine
- 1 cup (250ml) water
- 3 cup crushed tomatoes
- 5 bay leaves
- 3 tablespoons tomato paste
- 1 tablespoon sugar
- 1 lb bucatini
- sea salt and cracked black pepper
- ½ cup rosemary leaves, chopped
- finely grated parmesan, to serve
- Preheat oven to 180ºC (350ºF).
- Dust the beef in flour, shaking to remove any excess.
- Heat 2 tablespoons of oil in a dutch oven (pan) over high heat. Cook the beef for 2–3 minutes each side or until browned.
- Remove from the pan and set aside. Reduce heat to low, add the remaining oil, onion and garlic and cook for 6–8 minutes or until softened. Increase heat to high.
- Add the wine and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan, until liquid is reduced by half.
- Add the water, tomatoes, bay leaves, tomato paste and sugar and stir to combine.
- Return the beef to the pan, cover and transfer to the oven. Roast for 2 hours.
- Remove the lid and roast for a further 30 minutes. Remove beef from the pan and shred the meat using 2 forks, discarding any fat.
- Return meat to the sauce and mix to combine. Set aside. Cook the pasta according to its package instruction or until al dente.
- Drain, return to the pan with the beef sauce, salt, pepper and rosemary. Toss to combine. Sprinkle with parmesan to serve.