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Ragu

Ragu is superb as a sauce for spaghetti or lasagna.

ingredients

serves 4-6
3/4 lb/340 g lean beef, such as rump, skirt or feather steak, minced
1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 tbls (15 g) 1/2 oz butter
1 celery stalk, trimmed and finely chopped
1 medium carrot, peeled and finely chopped
1/2 cup (6 tbsp) 75 ml red wine
1/2 cup (6 tbsp) 75 ml milk
freshly grated nutmeg to taste
1 bay leaf
1 sage leaf
large can of plum tomatoes, approx 14 oz (400 g)
salt, pepper

accompaniments (you may need these)

method

1. Fry the onion gently in the oil and butter. When it is soft, add the celery and carrot.

2. The vegetables need to cook on a very low heat for about 40 minutes and to be stirred from time to time. Then add the meat, break it up in the saucepan with a fork or spoon and fry it until it loses its raw look.

3. Raise the heat and stir in the wine. Cook until the wine has evaporated, then add the milk with the nutmeg.

4. When the milk, too, has been absorbed on a gentle heat, add the herbs and rub the tomatoes through a sieve into the saucepan.

5. Lower the heat, partially cover and cook for 3 1/2 - 4 hours, stirring from time to time.

6. Season towards the end of cooking time, but not so near the end that the sauce does not respond to the seasoning.

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