Lamb Ragu and Pasta
I buy just about all of my meat from local Colorado farmers and ranchers, which means large amounts of meat, big roasts – and incredibly delicious and healthy choices. Many of my friends lament they don’t like lamb – well I think that’s because they’ve only had older, more gamey lamb that tastes closer to mutton. The Colorado lamb I get from Monroe Organic Farms is tender and mild. I cooked the shoulder roast recently using a recipe from my new cookbook, Tasting Colorado, to serve at a book signing and tasting event and had some shredded meat left over. I certainly didn’t want to toss it, so it’s been waiting patiently in my freezer for me to get creative.Making a ragu with shredded meat has a different texture to it than with browned, ground meat. It’s silkier, and somehow to me just tastes richer. And it couldn’t be easier. All you need to do is simmer the shredded cooked meat with the sauce and seasonings, then serve it over pasta. For those following along with the carb cycling diet, I’d recommend 1 ounce of pasta with about 3/4 cup of the ragu to hit a 250 calorie high carb meal. If you wanted this on a low carb day try serving the ragu more like a stew with some veggies on the side, or with a bit of nonfat cottage cheese stirred in. For those of you who are already fit and trim, lucky you – just dig in!
- 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 large onion, diced
- 1 pound shredded cooked lamb shoulder, fat drained
- 1 pint high quality tomato sauce (I used homemade)
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 8 ounces pasta of your choice
- Heat oil in a medium saucepan and add onions; cook over medium high heat until soft, about 5 minutes. Add garlic and saute another minute or two, then add lamb, tomato sauce, basil and oregano. Stir together, bring to a simmer, cover and let simmer for about 30 minutes.
- While ragu is simmering, cook pasta and drain. Season ragu with salt and pepper to taste and serve over the pasta with freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano cheese.
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