Month of June: Book: “My Berlin Kitchen” Recipe: Ragu alla Bolognese (Beef Ragu)

“The bitterest tears shed over graves are for words left unsaid and deeds left undone.” Harriet Beecher Stowe

I decided to opt for comfort today. What’s more comforting than a bowl of spaghetti with homemade sauce and grated parmasan cheese? This recipe for ragu bolognese will not disappoint but please be patient: it takes 5-7 hours to cook. The flavors all come together like magic in the end. Like the way our lives come together over time. Like the way it takes time, lots of time, to have a good friend.

I cried hard about Abby today. I still deeply miss her. She was so extraordinarily herself. I was so lucky to have known her and to be loved by her and to have loved her in return for 35 years. We were inexorably connected, yet comfortably separate. And by that I mean completely free to be ourselves. Our connection was a precious priceless gift. I didn’t fully realize, not really, like I do now, the depth of that love residing within me until after she was gone.

Why is life like that?

Ingredients: 1 tablespoon each of olive oil and butter, 1 large onion and 2 large carrots finely minced in equal proportions, 1 pound of ground beef and 1 pound of ground pork, 1/2 cup red wine, 28 ounce can of pureed and peeled san marzano tomatoes, 1 teaspoon of salt

1.Put the oil and butter in large cast iron pan. Add onion and soften about 7 minutes try to avoid darkening the onions. Then add carrots and cook for another 2-3 minutes. Stir.

2. Add the ground beef and pork. Raise the heat to medium high and using a spoon break of the clumps of meat until if breaks down uniformly. Cook until there is no pink, avoid browning. About 8-10 minutes. Add the wine and stir. Simmer 2-3 minutes.

3. Add tomatoes and salt, stir well. Lower heat to lowest setting, put on lid and let the sauce simmer for as long as you can. Per instructions, 7 hours is best, 5 is good, but nothing less than 3. The longer it cooks the richer it gets.

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