Monday, January 19, 2009

Meatily Delicious Sauce

I've been slowly converted to cooking Italian dishes like one of my favorite cookbooks, Donaldo Soviero's La Vera Cucina Italiana, would suggest - with the best possible ingredients (within reason) and with simple, subtle flavors. Along this line, for one of my best friends' birthday I whipped up a dish I'd been meaning to try...

Sugo di Carne
Leg of Lamb steaks braised in San Marzano Tomatoes, Cabernet Sauvignon, and aromatics, fork shredded and tossed with Fettucine and topped with Pecorino Romano and Parsley

Kudos to my buddy and amateur chef Noam for helping me figure out the best way to present it - he says they try to "twist" the spaghetti into a spiral on the plate. Easier said than done...but I got halfway there!

The lamb steaks were on the bone, so the sauce was all the richer from the deep flavors of the long braised bone pieces. The steaks were seared after the soffritto (mire poix) of carrot, celery, and onion was sauteed. After a quick deglaze with a cup of wine, the San Marzano (canned Italian whole tomatoes with what many consider the best flavor for sauces) went in and the whole dish braised for about an hour. At the end, the lamb was shreddable with the back of a fork! Completely succulent. The sauce was very simple, but delectably illustrated by the birthday boy:

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