Nov 29, 2015

Lamb Ragu over Tagliatelle

Prep Time: 20 mins
Cook Time: 2 hrs 30 mins
This comforting recipe is perfect for chilly winter months as the red sauce filled with carrots, celery, onion and cubed lamb is slowly simmered on the stove over time until the lamb is falling apart tender.

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If you’re looking for a great lamb recipe – look no further! This comforting recipe is perfect for chilly winter months as the red sauce filled with carrots, celery, onion and cubed lamb is slowly simmered on the stove over time until the lamb is falling apart tender. I crave thick hearty dishes like this in the winter when it is cold out and this one is perfect for just that. It makes the house smell delicious and the lamb becomes very tender as it simmers in the sauce.

Lamb Ragu over Tagliatelle

Difference Between Ragu and Bolognese

There is a geometric comparison here like how all squares are rectangles but not all rectangles are squares. All Bolognese is ragu but not all ragu is Bolognese. Filled with ground meat, Bolognese often called Ragu alla Bolognese is a specific type of ragu.

Lamb Ragu over tagliatelle recipe from cooking with cocktail rings

Key Ingredients in This Recipe

  • Lamb – This recipe used lamb shoulder meat. It comes from the shoulder of the lamb and since the muscles are worked hard it is ideal for braises and stews. Slowly cooking at a low heat makes the meat tender so it easily falls apart.
  • Pasta – Long, wide and flat noodles are great for ragu recipes. While I use a thinner tagliatelle, pappardelle also work well for serving this sauce.
  • Red wine – Red wine rounds out the flavor of this sauce. Use a dry red wine for the lamb ragu since it won’t overpower the dish by making it too sweet. While I will use just about any red wine in a pinch I prefer cooking with pinot noir. Never cook with a wine you wouldn’t drink!

How to Make This Lamb Ragu

  1. Season the lamb. Pat the lamb dry using paper towels and season the meat on all sides with salt and pepper. To remove remaining moisture, lightly dust the lamb with flour, shaking off any excess.
  2. Heat oil. Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large heavy bottomed pot or 7-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  3. Sear the lamb. Sear the lamb until browned on all sides. Place the seared lamb on a paper towel-lined plate to allow excess fat to drain and set aside.
  4. Cook the vegetables. Return the pan to medium heat, then add the remaining olive oil and heat through. Add the onions, celery, and carrots and cook until the onions become translucent and the vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes.
  5. Deglaze the pan. Add the red wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up any bits of meat from the bottom of the pan using a spoon. Allow the wine to simmer and reduce by about half, for about 10 minutes.
  6. Cook the lamb ragu. Add the tomatoes with their liquid, thyme, bay leaves, and seared lamb. Cover the pot and simmer on low, stirring occasionally, until the lamb is tender, about 2 hours. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  7. Cook the pasta. Bring a large pot of water to the boil; add salt and bring back to the boil. Pour in the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain and return the pasta to the pot.
  8. Coat the pasta with the sauce. Ladle in the enough of the lamb ragu to coat the pasta, then stir in the crushed red pepper flakes.
  9. Serve. Divide the pasta among warmed pasta bowls, topping with extra sauce if desired. Sprinkle with Parmesan and serve.

Lamb Ragu over tagliatelle recipe from cooking with cocktail rings

Tips and Tricks for This Recipe

  • Definitely don’t wear anything white while cooking the lamb ragu, the sauce tends to splatter while it simmers. White shirts with red lamb sauce splatter all over them are not cute, neither is that dry cleaning bill.
  • The sauce can be made ahead of time and refrigerated or frozen until ready to use.

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Other Recipes to Try

If you enjoy this recipe, I recommend checking out some of these:

Lamb Ragu over tagliatelle reshoot-41.jpg

Lamb Ragu over Tagliatelle

Print Pin
Prep Time 20 mins
Cook Time 2 hrs 30 mins
Serves 10

Ingredients:

  • 4 pounds boneless lamb shoulder, diced into 1” pieces
  • Kosher salt, as needed
  • Freshly ground black pepper, as needed
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 medium yellow onion, diced
  • 2 celery ribs, diced
  • 1 large carrot, diced
  • 3 cups red wine
  • 2 (28-ounce) each cans crushed tomatoes
  • 5 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 3 bay leaves
  • 2 pounds tagliatelle pasta
  • ½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, for serving

Instructions:

  • Pat the lamb dry using paper towels and season the meat on all sides with salt and pepper. To remove remaining moisture, lightly dust the lamb with flour, shaking off any excess.
  • Heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil in a large heavy bottomed pot or 7-quart Dutch oven over medium-high heat.
  • Sear the lamb until browned on all sides, 5 to 6 minutes total. Place the seared lamb on a paper towel-lined plate to allow excess fat to drain and set aside.
  • Return the pan to medium heat, then add the remaining olive oil and heat through. Add the onions, celery, and carrots and cook until the onions become translucent and the vegetables are tender, about 6 minutes.
  • Add the red wine to deglaze the pan, scraping up any bits of meat from the bottom of the pan using a spoon. Allow the wine to simmer and reduce by about half, for about 10 minutes.
  • Add the tomatoes with their liquid, thyme, bay leaves, and seared lamb. Cover the pot and simmer on low, stirring occasionally, until the lamb is tender, about 2 hours. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
  • Bring a large pot of water to the boil; add salt and bring back to the boil. Pour in the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until al dente, about 10 minutes. Drain and return the pasta to the pot.
  • Ladle in the enough of the lamb ragu to coat the pasta, then stir in the crushed red pepper flakes.
  • Divide the pasta among warmed pasta bowls, topping with extra sauce if desired. Sprinkle with Parmesan and serve.

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