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Sausage Ragu with Pappardelle

Simmer a hearty meat sauce for this simple sausage ragu; serving over wide pappardelle noodles makes it a little extra special.


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil ( EVOO)
  • 1 pound sweet Italian sausage with fennel seed, casings removed
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 3-4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • 1 rib celery with leafy top, finely chopped
  • 1 cup dry red wine
  • 1 can Italian crushed tomatoes (28 ounces)
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • A pinch of ground cinnamon
  • A pinch of ground clove
  • A pinch of freshly grated or ground nutmeg
  • Salt
  • A few leaves of fresh basil, torn
  • 1 pound pappardelle, such as Delverde, or other wide flat pasta
  • Grated Pecorino Romano cheese, for serving


Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

In a Dutch oven or medium size pot, heat the EVOO, two turns of the pan, over medium to medium-high. Add the sausage and cook, breaking it up with a spoon, until browned. Add the onion, garlic and celery and cook to soften, 10 minutes. Deglaze with the wine, then add the tomatoes, stock, cinnamon, clove and nutmeg. Bring the sauce to a simmer, then season with salt and stir in the basil. Simmer gently, stirring occasionally, for about 15 minutes.

Meanwhile, salt the boiling water and cook the pasta until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the starchy cooking water, then drain the pasta. Return the pasta to the pot and stir in half the sauce and the startchy cooking water as needed; stir to combine. Serve the pasta in shallow bowls topped with extra sauce and cheese.

Rachael Ray