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29 November 2006


Dan Goodman

Cooking slowly does seem to be the key to it. I have two recipes which call for cooking it for 3h and 6h. I tried the shorter of the two (from Marcella Hazan) but also nicked some of the ideas from the longer (from Heston Blumenthal) and to be honest I wasn't that excited about it. It seemed to me that it led to a wonderful texture, what Blumenthal calls the "mouth feel", but the taste was a little lacking.

Possibly I didn't get it quite right though. I didn't use veal because I couldn't find any, that might have been part of the problem.

To be honest though, it's not really a meat sauce that I'm that interested in. At this time of year, if I was going to go to this sort of effort I'd make the classic (Tuscan?) hare sauce which is out of this world.

Tony Hatfield

I've tried combinations 50/50 pork/beef and 50/50 veal/beef as well as 100% minced beef, and way out in front is the 50/50 veal/beef mince mix.
By the way Waitrose sells the 400g of minced veal for just under three quid!

Dan Goodman

Aha! Now that I'm actually living near a Waitrose rather than a Sainbury's I might just give that a go. Thanks for the tip!

Jane Harvey

The recipe I usually use is from Robert Carrier one from about 50 years ago, but we've just tried your recipe and thoroughly enjoyed it.

I used all beef, as veal is not available (and the nearest Waitrose being about 1,000 miles away makes that a little impractical). When I do it again I shall add a little garlic, which I felt it lacked.

I quite agree that too many English recipes treat this as an English sauce, and I find they also treat it as a sloppy sauce and serve far too much sauce in proportion with the pasta.

I haven't tried the Marcella Hazan recipe, but it does look interesting, so that's scheduled for a try in the New Year.

Jane Harvey

Sorry, for "too many English recipes treat this as an English sauce" read "too many English recipes treat this as an tomato sauce".

Tony Hatfield

I must admit I'm surprised that wonderful market in Barcelona- Mercat de la Boqueria- could not supply you with the veal!


Hygiene, taste, ease of assimilation are some of the advantages of oven and pan, which yield lighter foods.

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