Saturday, 14 May 2011

Lazy Beef Shin Ragu

I love lazy cooking like this, you get all the flavour without much effort at all. Don't get me wrong this is going to take a few hours to cook but the only thing you'll need to chop is an onion.

This would work just as well with cheek but I'm very much in love with Shin at the moment. There's something about that wobbly marrow that's like smack to the cave man inside me!

You need to start with the Shin, choose a nice fat slice. With a nice shiny eye of marrow staring up at you. Get a thick bottomed pan hot and drop in the beef with a splash of olive oil.

While this is colouring on a high heat chop your onion any old way you like. This isn't fussy food just throw it in. Let it soften for a minute then add the Cherry Toms; add the herbs and pour in a large glass of decent red wine.

This is Italian food so use an Italian wine. You'll want to drink the rest when you eat you see? Pour in the stock, the tomato puree and the tin of GOOD chopped tomatoes.

Turn down the heat to low and put a lid on the pan. At this point you can go watch some tele or read the paper, maybe read a book for a while? Check in occasionally on the Ragu, you may need to throw some water if it reduces down too much.

It's done when you can shred the meat with a fork and spoon and usually after three or so hours. Once you've shredded the meat return it to the sauce and allow it reduce down a little if necessary without the lid on.

Cook up some nice fresh egg pasta in some salty water. Drain and add to the sauce and serve with a healthy dose of Parmigiano and a big glass of that Italian red!

Ingredients for the Ragu:
One big thick slice of Beef Shin
A good handful of Cherry Tomatoes
1 large glass of Red Wine - I used a Montepulciano d'Abruzzo
Half a pint of Stock - Beef or Chicken
One good tin of Tomatoes and a good Squidge of Tom Puree
2 tsp of Thyme and Oregano - You can use fresh or dry
1 tbsp of Celery Seeds - Instant Aromatics
Salt and Pepper to season


  1. I seldom read recipes with such relish! That's a cracking one that I'll be copying. Great idea to throw the celery seeds in, I always find myself cursing when I realise I've got no aromatics in the kitchen...


  2. Whoopee! Another Shin recipe. I absolutely love Shin of beef, having discovered it some time last year. I've got a number of recipes for Shin and indeed Brisket on my blog. Although, I have to say that my butcher hasn't ever presented Shin with the marrow bone. I'll have to ask! I may have to start collecting Shin recipes, soon!

  3. I LOVE cooking like this. Not only do you end up with a fabulously tasty dish with minimum effort, but your house fills up with delicious smells.

    I tend to add a further step, I like to leave the reduced ragu in the fridge overnight and reheat it again the next day. That gives the flavour some time to really develop. I did it with short ribs and made the best beef ragu I have ever made (and tasted - arrogant? Moi?).

  4. @GG The Celery seeds are a great little trick, use them anywhere you'd put celery in and you can't go far wrong!

    @Jenny - I'll have to check you recipes out, I love Shin. I try to only ever buy on it on the bone though. LOVE LOVE LOVE Marrow so it's a no brainer for me :^)

    @Aaron I would normally leave it over night but I couldn't wait! There was plenty left over though so I had some for Breakfast as well, sooo good! (This by the way would be the best Ragu you'd ever tasted. Arrogant Moi? Defintely haha)

  5. @Paul Heh... you know what's coming next... #raguoff ;D

  6. Looks lovely and so simple too but surely you're not suggesting there will be wine left in the bottle when it comes to eating time? No no no, you meant to say 'open another bottle of Italian red' no? No?

  7. @MrFU Haha if I started drinking when this goes on the hob I'd be well sozzled come eating time... actually that sounds like a plan!

  8. This looks so so good! Bet it was divine, I will definitely be trying the recipe. x

  9. Hold on, I'm hungry again. Just finished a rather-too-worthy dinner while reading your post, nothing like as satisfying as this looks. Am going by the butcher and off licence first thing tomorrow for the hard stuff - I need to make this dish!

  10. I was wondering if you would like to put up a link to this beef recipe in my Food on Friday Series.