Servings: 6 cups
3 Tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1 medium yellow onion, minced
1 medium carrot, finely shredded
1/2 cup celery with leaves, minced
2 Tablespoons kosher salt
1 lb ground beef
1 lb ground pork
1/2 cup red wine
1 Tablespoon tomato paste
3 cups canned Italian tomatoes. Crushed by hand or passed through a food mill
3 bay leaves
Black pepper to taste
1. Bring 4 cups water to a simmer in a small saucepan, and keep hot. Heat the olive oil in a large Dutch oven over medium heat. When the oil is hot, add the onion, carrot, and celery, and cook, stirring, until the onion is translucent, about 7 minutes.
2. Crumble in the ground beef and pork, and continue cooking, stirring to break up the meat, until all the liquid the meat has given off has evaporated and the meat is lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
3. Pour in the wine, and cook, scraping the bottom of the pan, until the wine is evaporated, 3 to 4 minutes. Add in the tomato paste into a bare spot in the pan and cook a few minutes, then pour in the tomatoes, toss in the bay leaves, and season with the salt and some pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat so the sauce is at a lively simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until the sauce is dense but juicy and a rich dark red color. This will take about 2 to 3 hours-the longer you cook it, the better it will become.
4. While the sauce is cooking, add hot water as necessary to keep the meats and vegetables covered. (Most likely, a noticeable layer of oil will float to the top toward the end of cooking. When you are done, the oil can be removed with a spoon or reincorporated in the sauce, which is what is traditionally done.)
This is a very versatile sauce. It can it dress all shapes and sizes pasta, like fresh tagliatelle, dried spaghetti, or rigatoni.
This recipe makes enough sauce to dress 1½ pounds of dried pasta or one-and-a-half recipes tagliatelle—good for feeding a hungry crowd.