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I make the lamb ragu with the meat remaining on the bone of the leg of lamb, nothing goes to waste and the bone gives the ragu a creamy consistency and a deep flavour.
There are periods when the supermarkets have special offers on legs of lamb, and we definitely do not miss the opportunity to stock up on it.
So many ways to cook a leg of lamb.
To make the best use of it we cut it and cook it in different ways.
If you want to find out more you can read the article:
We usually cut the meat in the upper part in chunks as we like to cook those on the barbecue, but there is so much meat left on the bone that shouldn't go to waste.
So we use the bone and the meat from the lower part of the leg to make a lamb ragu.
This part of the meat is more stringy and it is best stewed for a long time.
If you want to know more about lamb meat, what it is called in French and Italian and how we cook it, you can read the post:
I make ragu in my WMF Perfect Pressure Cooker ( affiliate link) as it only takes 35 minutes to cook the meat.
It also retains all the flavour of the meat, and if you want to know more about how I use my pressure cooker you can read about it here: Pressure Cooker.
If you don't have a pressure cooker, just simmer the meat for 2 hours.
The lamb ragu can be served with pasta but also couscous or potatoes.
If you want to make a special meal for a wintery Sunday, you can serve it with homemade gnocchi, and here is the recipe on how to make them.
To serve the Lamb ragu with pasta, it is important to choose the right size and shape.
You can either use Rigatoni or homemade tagliatelle.
I like to use the Schiaffoni Pasta from Garofalo.
Schiaffoni in Italian means "slap in the face", and the name is very appropriate.
They are large rings of pasta and they are perfect for the lamb ragu.
The meat will be trapped inside the Schiaffoni rings, creating a cushion of chunky pasta, celebrating each bite of meat.
If you like your pasta "Al Dente", like us, you will love Pasta Garofalo: big pasta shapes with unusual forms and a firm texture.
20 rules to properly cook pasta
If you are a novice cook, here are some important points you need to know to properly cook pasta:
- Pasta should be boiled in salted water, adding salt after doesn't work
- Add the salt as soon as you put the pan with water on the heat, so you don't forget
- If you don't remember if you added salt to the water, taste the water
- Use 1 tbsp of salt per 4 quarts - 4 liters of water which should be enough for 1lb - 500 gr of pasta
- Make sure the pot is large enough so the water doesn't overflow once you put in the pasta
- If you put the lid on the pan, the water will get to the boiling point faster
- Do not add oil to the water
- The water should be boiling hot before you put the pasta in
- Use a good pasta brand. My favorites are (in this order): Rummo, Garofalo, De Cecco. Barilla is my least favorite one but better than any other unknown brands
- When you add the pasta, the water may stop boiling as the pasta lowers the water temperature. Put the lid on the pan until the water starts boiling again
- Once the water boils remove the lid otherwise the foam will overflow from the pan
- Stir the pasta from time to time
- Keep the heat high so the water boils all the time
- Always cook the pasta 1 minute less than what is written on the pasta box
- Taste the pasta and drain immediately when "Al Dente" meaning still firm and chunky
- Never leave the pasta floating in the water once it is cooked!!!!!
- As soon as the pasta is drained, season immediately and stir.
- If for whatever reason the seasoning is not ready, season the pasta with some extra virgin olive oil and stir
- Once the pasta is ready and seasoned, it has to be served and eaten immediately
- No parmesan in pasta with seafood, you can sprinkle toasted grated breadcrumbs or almonds
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📋 Braised Chunky Lamb Ragu
- From a leg of lamb remove the top chunky meat that you can cook on the barbecue and keep the bone and the lower part of the meat which is usually more stringy.
- Stir-fry the diced onion, carrot and celery to make a soffritto and once cooked add the meat.
- Brais the meat until it is all brown
- Add the tomato sauce and the beef stock, stir and close the pressure pan
- In the pressure cooker the lamb has to cook only 35 minutes. If you are using a normal pan, cook it for 2 hrs
- Boil the pasta and once it is ready, mix it with some of the sauce from the lamb ragu.
- Serve the rest of the ragu on a serving plate and guests can top up more meat and sauce over the pasta