Monday, January 02, 2006

Sunday Gravy

Makes 3 cups


2 Tb. olive oil
1 lb. meaty pork neck bone or spare ribs
1 lb. veal stew meat or 2 veal shoulder chops
1 lb. Italian-style or fennel pork sausages
4 garlic cloves
1/4 c. tomato paste
Three 28-35 oz. cans Italian peeled tomatoes
2 c. water
Salt and freshly ground pepper
6 fresh basil leaves, torn into small pieces


1 lb. ground beef or combo of pork and beef
1/2 c. plain bread crumbs
2 large eggs
1 tsp. finely minced garlic
1/2 c. freshly grated Percorino Romano or Parmigiano-Reggiano
2 Tb. finely chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
1 tsp. salt
Freshly ground pepper
2 Tb. oilve oil

To Serve:

1 lb. shells or rigatoni, cooked and still hot
Freshly grated Percorino Romano or parmigiano-Reggiano

To make the sauce heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium heat.
Pat the pork dry and place in the pot.
Cook, turning occasionally, for 15 minutes,
or until nicely browned on all sides.
Brown the veal the same way and add it to the plate.

Place the sausages in the pot and brown on all sides.
Set aside the sausages with the pork and veal.
Drain off most of the fat from the pot.
Add the garlic and cook for about two minutes or until browned.
Remove and discard the garlic.
Add the tomato paste and cook for one minute.
With a food mill, puree the tomatoes,with the juice, into the pot.
For a chunkier sauce, just chop up the tomatoes and add them.
Add the water, salt and pepper to taste.
Add the pork, veal, sausages and basil and bring to a simmer.
Partially cover the pot and cook over low heat,
stirring occasionally, for 2 hours.
If the sauce becomes too thick, add a little water.

Meanwhile make the meatballs:

Combine all ingredients except the oil in a large bowl.
Mix together thoroughly.
Rinse your hands with cool water
and lightly shape the mixture in to 2" meatballs.
If you are making meatballs for bake s ziti or lasagna,
make them smaller, about the size of a grape.

Heat the oil in a large heavy skillet.
Add the meatballs and brown them well on all sides.
Transfer the meatballs to a plate.

After two hours, add the meatballs
and cook for 30 minutes or until the sauce
is thick and the meats very tender.

To serve, remove the meats from the sauce and set aside.
Toss the cooked pasta with the sauce.
Sprinkle with cheese.

From The Sopranos Family Cookbook