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Marcella Hazan's Ragu Bolognese

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I made the recipe to the exact specifications.

It was good but I found it a little too subtle in flavor for my liking and thought the other veg to tomato ratio was high.

I wouldn't make it again.

Has anyone else been dissapointed?

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  1. Nope. It sounds like you just aren't crazy about this particular dish, or expect it to resemble the Americanized "bolognese-style" red sauce typically found in Italian restaurants in the US.

    It is not supposed to be a tomato-based sauce, and Marcella's version is the closest I've ever made to the real thing that I've had in Italy.

    It's just a matter of taste, really. Some people (like me) love the stuff, you don't. No loss, just move on to something else.

    As the ancient Italians used to say, "De gustibus non disputandum est" (roughly, "There's no point in arguing about matters of taste").

    1. I had some excellent Bolognese in a restaurant that my dining companion guessed they used filet mignon, he said that style was very popular in Italy, The chef confirmed it.

      1. I generally am a huge Marcella fan, but I found her Bolognese recipe disappointing. I therefore looked at a ton of recipes, and there is a great deal of variation (even among authentic recipes from other Italian cooks/chefs).

        Marcella's recipe calls for all beef, if think, but I've found it's definitely better with half beef/half pork. I'm sure a little veal would be nice as well.

        The last time I made Bolognese, I largely used Mark Bittman's recipe and thought it was much better than Marcella's (heresy, I know!). I think I also added some beef stock, which other recipes call for. And definitely start off with browning in butter AND oil.

          1. Always have your own opinions. And if you do not like Hazan's, try to figure out what you liked and what you did not like. Then search other recipes and try to find the Bolognese that matches your desires. That's what is great about cooking.

            For jfood, Hazan was a huge disappointment the first time since he was expecting something different and as he was stirring after hours of work he just kept asking himself "when does it start to look like bolognese?" You know the answer. Now he absolutely loves it and he is never without a couple of portions inthe freezer for a quick fix. But there are other meat-sauces he also makes and loves in it's time and place.

            So be true to yourself, if you want to try again go for it now that you know the result is different from your expectations, and if not read other recipes and try theirs. On these boards jfood would guess there is an 80% approval on Hazan's, so you are not alone as you can see from the links MMRuth posted.

            If you find one you really like please pass along the link or the recipe. Many of us are always looking for great ways to make great dishes.

            Happy New Year

            1 Reply
            1. re: jfood

              I have never made Hazan;s but I make the recipe from Dean and Deluca cookbook, which has carrots and chicken livers in it and it is outstanding. It is very meaty, not at all saucey, but wonderful in flavor.