This pasta is absolutely delicious, with richness and a true depth of flavor! It has a perfect blend of veal and sausage, coupled with the added umami from the porcini mushrooms. It's extra special on homemade pappardelle!
- 1 cup water
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 1/4 cup good quality olive oil
- 1 small yellow onion, finely chopped
- 1 small carrot, peeled, finely chopped or grated
- 1/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh Italian parsley
- 2 garlic cloves, finely chopped
- 8 ounces sweet Italian sausages, casings removed
- 8 ounces veal stew meat, coarsely chopped
- 1/2 cup good quality dry red wine
- 4 cups good quality chicken broth
- 1 28-ounce can whole San Marzano tomatoes, with juice
- 1 tablespoon good quality tomato paste
- 2 bay leaves
- 2 teaspoons finely chopped fresh sage
- 1 teaspoon fennel seeds, lightly crushed
- 1 pound fresh pappardelle or purchased fettuccine
- Freshly grated Parmesan cheese
- Bring 1 cup water and mushrooms to boil in small saucepan. Remove from heat and let stand for 30 minutes. Strain the soaking liquid through a cheese cloth lined strainer into a bowl. Coarsely chop mushrooms. Set liquid and mushrooms aside.
- Heat oil in heavy large skillet or pot over medium-high heat. Add onion, carrot, 1/4 cup parsley, and garlic. Sauté until vegetables are tender, about 5 minutes. Push vegetables to side of skillet. Add sausage, break up with spatula or back of a fork, and cook until browned. Add veal and sauté until brown, about 5 minutes. Add wine. Increase heat to high and boil until wine is almost evaporated, about 5 minutes. Add 1 cup chicken broth and boil 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add reserved mushroom liquid. Simmer until liquid is almost absorbed, about 5 minutes.
- Using a food processor or immersion blender, process just until coarsely chopped. Return mixture to skillet. Mix in tomatoes with juices, tomato paste, bay leaves, sage, fennel seeds and porcini mushrooms. Reduce heat to low. Simmer uncovered until sauce thickens, breaking up tomatoes with fork, adding remaining chicken broth 1/2 cup at a time and stirring occasionally for about 1 hour. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
- Cook pasta in large pot of boiling salted water until tender but still firm to bite, stirring occasionally. Drain and add sauce to pasta pot and rewarm over medium heat. Add pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to bowl. Sprinkle with cheese and remaining 2 tablespoons parsley.
Yields: 6 to 8 servings