Steak & Veal Ragu - The labor of love !


This recipe is one of my favorites. You can make it light in spring and heavy in winter. Nothing beats a great Ragu. I updated a BBC Food recipe for Ragu and added my own spin to it. I hope you enjoy !!

  • 50g dried porcini mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp Irish butter
  • 3 large carrots, finely chopped
  • 1.5 large red onion, finely chopped
  • 200g pancetta, rough chopped
  • 6-10 garlic cloves, crushed - Personally I normally add as much garlic as I can
  • 1 sprig fresh rosemary, leaves picked and finely chopped
  • 10 bay leaves 
  • 1 Pound Steak - Minced
  • 1 Pound Veal - Minced
  • 4 Cups homemade tomato sauce
  • Large pinch of dried chili flakes
  • Bottle of Malbec or Shiraz red wine
  • 400g can chopped tomatoes
  • 300ml fresh beef stock, hot
  • Gluten free Linguini 


1. Soak the porcini mushrooms in 200ml boiling water for 30 minutes. Drain, reserving the liquid. Chop and set aside.

2. Heat the butter in a casserole over a medium heat. I find most oils heated to extreme temperatures break down, butter is by far the best option. The type of pan is really important, you want enough surface area at the bottom of the pan to really enable the ingredients to sweat. I use a large All-Clad pan as when you leave this for 5-7+ hours to cook you don't have to worry about it sticking to the bottom of the pan.

3. Add the carrots, onion, pancetta, garlic, bay leaves and rosemary and cook for 5-10 minutes, making sure you keep stirring and transferring the juices around the pan.

4. Make a well in the middle of the pan and add the puree, make sure you let this sweat off the puree at the bottom of the pan as it takes the sour taste away. Increase the heat to high and add both mince meats and let it brown for 10-15 minutes.

5. Add the chili and cook for 1 minute. You will see I use 1 bottle of wine which is a lot more than the original recipe. Given I end up slow cooking the meat, it all evaporates away. Add in mushroom liquid and 1/4 bottle of the wine, tomatoes, stock and porcini. Bring to the boil, cover and simmer over a very low heat for 2 hours.

6. Keep an eye on the pot and stir occasionally. After 2 hours in another 1/4 bottle of the wine. Continue doing this until all the wine has been added and the Ragu is consistency as the picture below.

7. Finally boil some linguini pasta Al Dente and serve with some Parmesan cheese.