Ragu with Gigli Pasta, Spinach and Goats Ricotta Recipe

This recipe will make a large batch but it freezes well and can be used for quick and easy meals in the future. You’ll need a large pan for this, but the recipe can easily be halved if needs be.

We recommended “gigli” pasta for this but any type of pasta will do but we recommend something like a rigatoni where the sauce can be trapped inside the large tubes. Another option would be a wide ribbon style pasta like Papadelle. Gigli, also known as Campanelle, comes from Tuscany and is in the shape of a flower (gigli means lily). It’s perfect for ragu as it holds the sauce in the ‘petals’.

Ricotta made from goat’s milk gives this an extra tang, but if you can’t be bothered to make your own, either use a young goat’s cheese or a standard ricotta.

Ingredients 

Serves 4, with extra Ragu to freeze.

1x 500g packet Sloane’s Italian Fennel Sausages
500g  ground Angus beef
500g  ground pork
500ml beef stock
250ml passata
250ml red wine
4 large tomatoes, chopped
2 carrots, diced
2 sticks celery, diced
2 onions, chopped
6 garlic cloves, chopped
2 sprigs rosemary
Salt & pepper
Olive oil
400g Gigli Pasta (or another pasta that’s good at holding the sauce in like Rigatoni)
1kg spinach, picked and washed
Whole garlic
250g goat’s milk ricotta (recipe below)

 

Ragu with Gigli Pasta, Spinach & Goats Ricotta
Ragu with Gigli Pasta, Spinach & Goats Ricotta

Instructions

Dice your vegetables and then in an extra large pan gently cook the onions and garlic until soft. Add the carrot and celery and continue cooking for 5 minutes.

Split open the sausages and remove the meat. Now add all three meats into the pan and brown them off. Add the red wine and rosemary, followed by the tomatoes, passata and stock. Bring to the boil and reduce the heat and cook slowly for at least an hour, ideally two to three hours. During this time give it an occasional stir when needed and skim off any excess fat from the top.

Season well, put some sauce aside for this dish and freeze the rest for the future.

When ready, bring a large pan of salted water to the boil and add your pasta (gigli usually takes about 7-8 minutes).

While your pasta is cooking get your picked and washed spinach and then stab the clove of garlic onto a fork. Sauté the spinach in a little olive oil in a large pan and stir using the garlic. Season with salt and pepper and place in a colander to drain.

Once the pasta is done, remove from the water, and in a large pan mix in some Ragu, a splash of the pasta cooking water and the spinach. Finally fold in the crumbled ricotta.

Serve into your dishes and crumble the remaining ricotta over the top and a few twists from a pepper mill.

Goat’s Milk Ricotta

2 litres of goat’s milk
1 tsp citric acid (or 3 tsp lemon juice)

Bring the milk to the boil, then turn down the heat to medium. Add the citric acid or lemon juice and stir briefly. The milk will split. Slowly cook the curds for about 20 minutes without boiling. Once cooked strain the curds through cheesecloth and hang for 30 minutes.

Recipe by Joe Sloane