Lamb Ragù

Based on the book Making Artisan Pasta

Ingredients

  • 1 1⁄2 pounds (675 g) boneless lamb shoulder 
  • 1 small red onion, peeled, trimmed, and cut into rough
    chunks 
  • 1 rib celery, washed and trimmed, cut into thick slices 
  • 1 carrot, peeled and trimmed, cut into thick slices 
  • 2 cloves garlic
    Fine sea salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 
  • 1⁄4 cup (60 ml) extra-virgin olive oil 
  • 2 teaspoons each finely chopped fresh thyme and rosemary 
  • 1 cup (235 ml) dry red wine 
  • 1 container (26 ounces, or 750 ml) chopped plum tomatoes

Directions

  1. Place the lamb in the freezer for 30 minutes or until firm but not hard. 
  2. Trim off excess fat and cut into very small cubes. Reserve. 
  3. Preheat the oven to 300 F (150 C, or gas mark 2). 
  4. Make a soffritto by placing the onion, celery, carrots, and garlic in the bowl of a food processor and process to small chunks or chop together finely by hand. Reserve. 
  5. Season the lamb with salt and pepper. 
  6. Heat 2 tablespoons (30 ml) of the oil in a dutch oven and brown the lamb cubes well on all sides, working in several batches to maintain high temperature in the pan. 
  7. Transfer the lamb to a metal bowl. 
  8. Add the remaining 2 tablespoons (30 ml) olive oil, herbs, and soffritto to the dutch oven. Cook over medium heat until the vegetables are softened and most of the liquid has cooked away. 
  9. Add to the lamb, wine, and tomatoes, mix well, cover, and bake 1 hour in the oven, or until oil rises to the top of the sauce and the meat is tender.
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