Venetian duck ragù with pappardelle



This dish is the perfect way to get cosy on a dark, autumnal evening. Perch at the dining table with a steaming bowl of silky pappardelle pasta, lusciously coated with a rich duck and red wine sauce. Like any ragù, its flavours develop gradually as you simmer it for a couple of hours and the meat within becomes even more tender, best cooked on a grey, drizzly weekend when there's not much else to do but wrap up in a blanket, drink wine and cook with it too.


I'd recommend cooking this in a cast iron pot if you have one, so the meat tenderizes slowly and beautifully. You can also make this a day ahead when convenient, then serve with dried or fresh pasta and a healthy glass of red wine. The duck pairs wonderfully with a Pinot Noir as it's not too bold and complements the touch of cinnamon (Cono Sur Bicicleta Pinot Noir is my favourite).




INGREDIENTS (Serves 6)

  • 1 tbsp olive oil

  • 4 duck legs

  • 2 onions, finely chopped

  • 2 medium carrots, finely chopped

  • 1 stick of celery, finely chopped

  • 2 fat garlic cloves, crushed

  • 2 tsp ground cinnamon

  • 2 tsp plain flour

  • 250ml red wine

  • 2 x 400g cans chopped tomatoes

  • 1 organic chicken stock cube, made up to 250ml

  • 3 rosemary sprigs, leaves picked and chopped

  • 3 thyme sprigs, left whole

  • 2 bay leaves

  • 1 tsp sugar

  • 2 tbsp milk

  • 600g paccheri or pappardelle pasta

  • parmesan, grated, to serve


METHOD


  1. Heat the oil in your cast iron pot or heavy-bottomed saucepan (with lid). Add the duck legs and brown on all sides for about 10 mins. Remove to a plate and set aside. Add the onions, carrots and celery to the pan and cook for 5 mins until softened. Add the garlic and cook for a further 1 min, then stir in the cinnamon and flour and cook for a further min. Return the duck to the pan, add the wine, tomatoes, stock, herbs, sugar and seasoning. Bring to a simmer, then lower the heat, cover with a lid and cook for 2 hrs, stirring every now and then.

  2. Cook the pasta following pack instructions, then drain, reserving a cup of the pasta water, and add the pasta to the ragu. Stir to coat all the pasta in the sauce and cook for 1 min more, adding a splash of cooking liquid if it looks dry. Serve with grated Parmesan, if you like.r, uncovered, for a further 10-15 mins while you cook the pasta. Carefully remove the whole sprigs of thyme and the bay leaves.

  3. Cook the pasta following pack instructions, then drain, reserving a cup of the pasta water, and add the pasta to the ragu. Stir to coat all the pasta in the sauce and cook for 1 min more, adding a splash of cooking liquid if it looks dry. Serve with grated Parmesan.







ABOUT The Foody Girl

i love  whipping up  dishes from across the world,  mostly inspired by my time living  in jordan and morocco. many of my recipes draw from elements of middle eastern and north african cooking and i delight in introducing friends and family to these unique flavours. 

i  hope you enjoy following my adventures in the kitchen

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