Black Garlic Pappardelle with Lamb Ragù alla Bolognese, garnished with pea shoots, shaved Parmesan, and ricotta.
Yesterday, Slow Food USA shared a link on its Twitter feed to an article about Slow Food Italy’s creative response to the recent scandal of horsemeat-tainted prepared foods across Europe. Their idea: stuff your own pastas and make your own meat-based sauces in protest. Or in other words, know where your ingredients are coming from and what they are. In my own—not exactly selfless—gesture of solidarity, I made Pappardelle Ragù alla Bolognese. My dish was not traditional. First of all, I used lamb. I also added a mix of herbs with my dry bay leaf: thyme, rosemary, oregano, and parsley. I filled out the conventional Bolognese soffritto (onion, carrot, celery) with diced calabacita italiana, or Italian zucchini. The pappardelle is also a variation: I made it with black garlic. I love the Slow Food attitude that politics can perhaps be palatable.
Like one would do with spinach, I mashed the black garlic into the flour and egg as I was making my dough. I used five cloves, 1 egg, 3/4 cup flour, plus a bit extra, 1 tsp kosher salt, and 1 tsp olive oil.
In case the black garlic experiment didn’t work, I made a plain batch.
For the ragù, I browned 4 lamb loin chops and braised them with sautéed diced red onion, carrot, celery, calabacita italiana, and pancetta. The braising liquid is 1 cup red wine (reduced), 1 cup chicken stock, and 1 can San Marzano tomatoes, chopped. I tied a few sprigs of rosemary, thyme, parsley, and oregano together and added them with a bay leaf. I braised the meat for 2 hours at 300 °F. The meat is removed from the bone and chopped when finished, then added back to the sauce after the fat has been skimmed.