Artusi recipes Ragù di carne


It is a white sauce based on veal that has the particularity of being blended with the broth to amplify the aromatic notes.


Start by placing the chopped celery, carrot and onion to fry with oil in a large-bottomed saucepan over a lively fire.


In the meantime, chop the bacon and cut the veal into small cubes. Once the vegetables have been toasted, remove them from the heat and keep them separately, placing the two meats in the same pan, continuing to mix until they are well browned.


Once the cooking point is reached, add the vegetables again and add the flour, stirring for a minute and then blend with a ladle of cold broth. Once all the liquid has evaporated, when the meat begins to sizzle again and release the unmistakable aroma of toasted meat, repeat the operation. Continue for a couple of times, always scraping the bottom of the pan well with a spoon to recover all the aromas. This procedure is not prescribed in the original recipe, but it was commonly used to obtain meat sauces used as a condiment, so I recommend following it also in this case.


Finally, cover the meat with the remaining broth, letting the covered sauce simmer over low heat for at least two hours, making sure to mix it every now and then. Season with salt, pepper and add the nutmeg to your liking. At the end, the ragù must be dense, but not dry, brown in color and full-bodied taste.


Among the optional ingredients that can be used to enrich the sauce, Pellegrino Artusi recommends dried mushrooms (previously soaked) combined with the meat. In the meantime, the macaroni or egg noodles are boiled al dente and, once drained, mix cold with plenty of grated Parmesan cheese and a little seasoning, using the more liquid part in particular.

The pasta will be served on a plate and enriched with a few more spoonfuls of this fragrant progenitor of Bolognese ragù.

Ingredients for 4 people:


  • 1/2 liter of broth

  • 150g of minced veal meat

  • 50g of cured and unsmoked stretched bacon (the "carnesecca" of Artusi). It is not always easy to find, alternatively you can use the smoked one

  • 40g of extra vergine olive oil

  • 1/4 of onion

  • 1/2 carrot

  • 2 palm-long ribs of white celery, or half of green celery

  • 1 teaspoon of flour

  • Salt, pepper and nutmeg

  • 500g of rigatoni (Artusi recommends a pasta called "horse's teeth", which has now disappeared,

  • which can be replaced with simple rigatoni) or the same amount of egg tagliatelle

  • Plenty of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano