I was very interested to read the discussion on meat 'sauces' for pasta, many of which get called 'Bolognese'.
There are hundreds and hundreds of different ragų recipes, for all different types of pasta - I am doing a study of this subject right at the moment - and all are interesting and mouth-watering.
Of course, the most famous is 'La Bolognese', which ranks alongside 'La Genovese', 'La Barese', and 'La Napoletana'.
On 17 October 1982, the Accademia Italiana della Cucina, which is part of the Italian Chambers of Commerce, registered the authentic Bolognese Sauce recipe, which is as follows:
Accademia Italiana della Cucina/Ragų alla Bolognese
No. servings: 6
Region of origin: Emilia Romagna
Recipe Category: Sauces and stews
300g topside (or skirt, shoulder, or shin),coarse ground 20%fat, 150g Italian pancetta, 50g carrot, 50g stick of celery, 50g onion, 300g Italian tomato passata or Italian peeled plum tomatoes, 1/2 glass dry white wine, 1/2 glass milk (where one glass = 200ml), beef stock preferably homemade,olive oil or butter, 1/2 glass single cream (optional).
Cut the pancetta into small cubes and then cook it gently in a 20cm terracotta braising pot (traditional Italian) or a 20cm, thick-bottomed sauce pan) so as to render the fat out of it. Add the oil/butter and the soffritto of carrot/celery/onion and soften until it's lightly browned. Then add the ground beef and mix the ingredients well. Stir until well mixed and lightly browned and sizzling. Deglaze with the wine, and stir until completely evaporated. Then add the peeled plum tomatoes or passata, stir well and cover and put to simmer adding water/ stock as necessary to avoid the ragų drying out too much. Add the milk (to taste and to balance the acidity) towards the end of cooking.
The custom in Bologna is to add the cream only if you're using dried pasta. With fresh pasta it isn't necessary, so leave it out.
The above is the updated recipe of the authentic Ragų alla Bolognese, registered with the Italian Academy of Gastronomy, Chamber of Commerce
of Bologna on 17th October 1982.
Note: When fresh tomatoes are in season, they are much better than preserved ones. NEVER add sugar. There should be enough sugar in the tomatoes.
My research on Italian ragų's has reached well over 250 so far, and still going!
One golden rule: NEVER use spaghetti with meat ragų, ONLY EVER with fish ragų's.
If you would like the recipe for making your own tomato purče, please reply to this thread.
Enough is never as good as a feast Oscar Wilde