Sunday, February 15, 2009

veal and eggplant ragu

what you need
30g butter
2 tbsp olive oil
1 small onion, finely chopped
½ a small carrot, finely chopped
½ stick celery, finely chopped
450g veal mince
375ml dry white wine
1 cup tinned Italian peeled tomatoes, pureed
1 cinnamon stick
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 medium eggplant
olive oil, for frying
1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
parmesan, freshly grated
parsley, finely chopped

what to do
In a medium pot over low heat, melt the butter and olive oil. Gently cook the onion, carrot and celery until soft and lightly coloured (about 10-12 minutes).
Turn the heat to high and add the veal mince. Cook, stirring until the veal is no longer raw and there is no liquid in the bottom. Add half the wine and reduce before adding the rest, along with the pureed tomatoes, cinnamon stick and cloves. Season with salt and pepper and add enough water to just cover the sauce. Turn the heat to low and simmer gently, covered, for 45 minutes.
In the meantime, cut the eggplant into two-centimetre cubes, lightly salt and leave for 30 minutes. Rinse the eggplant pieces and pat dry, then fry, until golden brown, in a pan with enough olive oil to come 1cm up the sides.
Add the sliced garlic and fried eggplant to the ragu and cook for 10 minutes. The veal should be tender and the sauce should have a thick, wet consistency (this is especially important if using fresh pasta, which will absorb some of the liquid); you may need to top up the water a little.Remove the cinnamon stickand check the seasoning and adjust if necessary.

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