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Beef Ragu with Pasta


This beef ragu begins with a rump roast, browned to deepen its flavor. The meat is then braised in a thick liquid of wine and crushed tomatoes, made aromatic with garlic and punched up with a little hot pepper.

  • Servings: 6

Photography: ANN STRATTON

Source: Martha Stewart Living, January 2007


  • 1 beef rump roast (about 3 pounds)
  • Coarse salt and freshly ground pepper
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 3 medium onions, halved lengthwise, then cut crosswise into 1/4-inch-thick slices
  • 5 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound cremini mushrooms, cut into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 3 tablespoons fresh oregano leaves
  • 1 can (28 ounces) whole peeled plum tomatoes with juice
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 1/2 teaspoon red-pepper flakes
  • 1 pound penne or other tubular pasta
  • Shaved Parmesan cheese, for garnish


  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Season beef all over with salt and pepper. Heat 3 tablespoons oil in a large Dutch oven over high heat. Add beef, and brown on all sides. Transfer beef to a rimmed baking sheet. Reduce heat to medium.

  2. Add remaining tablespoon oil to pot. Add onions, and cook, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon, until edges are browned, 5 to 7 minutes. Add garlic, mushrooms, oregano, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook, stirring, 3 minutes. Add tomatoes, and crush with spoon. Stir in wine and red-pepper flakes. Return beef to pot, and spoon tomato mixture over top. Cover, and place in oven. Braise until beef is fork-tender, about 4 hours.

  3. Bring a large pot of water to a boil; add 1 tablespoon salt. Add pasta; cook until al dente. Drain, and return to pot.

  4. Remove pot from oven. Using a slotted spoon, transfer beef to a plate. Toss pasta with the sauce; transfer to bowls. Top with pieces of beef, dividing evenly, and garnish with Parmesan.

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