Make this Italian beef cheek ragu recipe in just a few simple steps. Find out which wine to pair it with and how you can get your hands on a great bottle!
- 2kg (4lbs) beef cheeks
- 30ml (2 tbsp) vegetable oil
- 2 onions, peeled and finely chopped
- 8 garlic cloves, peeled and crushed
- 2 celery ribs, washed and finely chopped
- 2 carrots, peeled and finely chopped
- 15ml (1 tbsp) fresh rosemary, finely chopped
- 4 beef stock cubes
- 5ml (1 tsp) dried oregano
- 500ml (2 cups) red wine
- 800g (2lbs) passata
- 30ml (2 tbsp) brown sugar
- Preheat oven to 160°C/320°F/gas mark 3.
- Heat the oil in a large ovenproof casserole.
- Brown the cheeks all over on a high heat, remove from the casserole and set aside.
- Lower the heat, then add the onion, garlic, celery and carrot to the casserole and fry for 3 minutes, or until the vegetables have softened.
- Return the meat to the casserole.
- Sprinkle the herbs over the vegetables.
- Crumbled the stock cubes over the meat.
- Turn up the heat and pour in the wine, letting it sizzle for a few minutes.
- Pour in the passata and add the sugar.
- Give everything a good stir and wait for the stew to reach a slow simmering point.
- Place the lid on the casserole and transfer it to the oven.
- After 1 hour, remove the lid and cook for another 3 hours. Check on the meat once in a while, turning over the top pieces so that their surfaces don’t harden and burn.
- Place the lid back on, lower the heat to 140°C/275°F/gas mark 1.
- The meat should now fall apart with the touch of a fork. Remove the casserole from the oven and shred the meat to desired consistency.
- Serve on a bed of buttered pappardelle and a glass of red wine.
- The amount of stock cubes used should equate to 1 litre’s (4 cups) worth.
- You don’t have to faff about with the lid during cooking time so much. Cooking without the lid simply means the liquid will evaporate and you’re left with a thick, luscious sauce. You can cook it for 6 hours straight in the oven with the lid on if you prefer. It’s always good to check up on the meat every once in a while though.
- Category: Main Course
- Cuisine: Italian
- Serving Size: 1
- Calories: 183
- Sugar: 4.8g
- Sodium: 24mg
- Fat: 4.9g
- Saturated Fat: 0.7g
- Carbohydrates: 15.7g
- Fiber: 2.5g
- Protein: 7g