Simple beef ragu
Recipe type: Entree
Cuisine: Italian
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 6
A ragu is a classic dish of meat that is cooked until it is tender enough to shred with a fork, and because it uses cheap but flavourful cuts of meat, it is also packed with flavour. It's ridiculously simple to make and satisfying to eat on a chilly evening.
  • 1.2 kg beef brisket (steaks or a joint)
  • olive oil
  • salt and pepper
  • 1 large onion, diced
  • 2 stalks of celery, diced
  • 1 carrots, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 4-5 tinned anchovy fillets , chopped
  • nutmeg
  • 300ml white wine
  • 1 x 410g tin chopped tomatoes
  • about 450g passata
  1. Pat the meat with paper towels to remove moisture. Season with salt and pepper. In a large cast-iron pot, heat just enough olive oil to cover the bottom. When very hot, brown the meat on all sides, then remove from the pot and keep warm.
  2. Add a little more oil to the pot and then add the onions, carrots, celery, garlic, and anchovies. Cook for about five minutes, stirring all the time. Add the salt, pepper and a good pinch of ground nutmeg, then add the wine and cook for 3-4 minutes.
  3. Add the meat back to the pot together with the chopped tomatoes, the passata and 375 mls of water. Once the pot is simmering, reduce to a low heat and allow it to bubble away gently for about three hours. Don't forget to stir the pot from time to time to make sure it is not stickingm and add extra water if the sauce seems to be getting too thick.
  4. After three hours, remove just the meat from the pot and use two forks to shred it. Pick out any bones or gristle and discard. When all the meat is shredded, return it to the pot and stir well to mix with the sauce. Continue to simmer gently for another 1-2 hours, stirring occasionally. Add water if the sauce getes too thick.
  5. Serve on pasta, topped with grated Parmesan cheese.
This also freezes beautifully, so make a large batch and freeze half.
Recipe by Cooksister | Food, Travel, Photography at