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Lamb Ragu with Mafalde

Lamb Ragu with Mafalde


PAM's resident recipe contributor Tom Mitchell-Dawson cranking up the easter vibes with this beautiful ragu, perfect for a Sunday supper!

 April doesn’t always bring with it spring sunshine, cool long evenings and the ability to do away with winter coats. Often we are stuck in some sort of purgatory between winter and summer. The cold still prevailing day after day and not much hope for sun on the horizon.

This is often when we are most in need of something comforting on the table. The recipe owes much of its charm to the hours it spends slowly ticking away in the oven, allowing the lamb time to steadily fall apart. The tenderness of the lamb allows it to get caught in the frilled edges of pasta meaning every mouthful brings with it the same mix of sweet tomato sauce and aromatic lamb. 

Serves 3

Cooking time, 3 hours


600g Lamb leg or shoulder, cut into large pieces 

1 onion, finely chopped

1 small carrot, finely chopped

2 sticks of celery, finely chopped

3 cloves of garlic, minced 

1tbsp of tomato puree

1 glass of red wine

1 tin of plum tomatoes

250ml of lamb or beef stock

1 sprig or rosemary 

2 bay leaves 

Parmesan to serve


Step 1

Preheat the oven to 160c

Start by making sure to cut off any tough bits of fat or sinew from the lamb if your butcher hasn’t already. Then season well with salt and black pepper.

Set a casserole dish over a high heat with a generous amount of olive oil. When hot, add the lamb and fry until golden brown all over, then set aside.

Step 2 

Turn the heat down to a medium and add the vegetables. Season and gently fry for 15 minutes until they are lightly browning.

 Next, return the lamb, stir in the tomato puree and cook for a few minutes. This will remove any bitterness from the tomato puree. Deglaze the pan with a glass of red wine and reduce.

 Step 3

When the wine has reduced by half add in the plum tomatoes, crushing them by hand as you do so, along with the juice from the can, stock and herbs.

Bring to the boil, place on a lid and put in the oven for 2 hours.

 After 2 hours remove the lid and cook for a further 20 minutes.

Step 4 

Cook 1 box of Mafalde in heavily salted boiling water according to packet instructions. Once cooked drain the pasta, reserving a little pasta water. 

Take the ragu out of the oven and shred the pieces of lamb with two forks. Add the pasta to the ragu and stir through. If the ragu needs loosening add a little pasta water. Serve with lashings of Parmesan.

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