We veered into the realms of the classic bolognese this evening, but with a different interpretation in Tom Kerridge's beef ragu recipe. I chose rigatoni to attend alongside, an understated escort to a meaty sauce.
If everybody has a favourite pasta shape, mine is those chunky tube shapes ridged on the outside and wide enough to capture up sauce inside. My fondness for them comes from takeaway lunches from an Italian shop on Clerkenwell Road, EC1 in the early 90s. In my first ‘real’ full time job ‘rigatoni bolognese’ quickly became my default choice when I needed more than a sandwich. If you're a regular reader, you'll know that pasta features in moderation on our dinner table, but there was no substitute when it came to an accompaniment for this ragu sauce.
Red wine gives this dish a deep rich colour and flavour. Slower cooking and grating the carrots also helps thicken the ragu into a luxuriant sauce that clings to the meat and leaves you with satisfyingly glossy lips.