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Recipes

Three cheese beef ragu pasta bake

Serious comfort food for cold nights when only pasta will do!

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Serving: 6
Time: 1 hour
Difficulty: Easy

Ingredients

  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 500g beef mince
  • 100g smoked bacon lardons
  • 1 onion, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 small carrot, peeled and finely chopped
  • 250ml red wine
  • 200ml milk
  • 1 tsp dried oregano
  • 750ml passata  
  • 2 tbsp tomato purée
  • 50g rigatoni  
  • 1L vegetable stock
  • 200g blue cheese, roughly crumbled 
  • 200g cheddar cheese, roughly grated
  • 1 x 150g ball buffalo mozzarella, roughly torn
  • Large handful of basil leaves
  • Sea salt and ground black pepper

Directions

  1. Heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil in a large ovenproof casserole pan over a high heat. Add the mince and fry for 6-8 minutes until browned. Remove the mince from the pan and set aside on a plate.
  2. Heat another tablespoon of the oil in the pan, then add the bacon and fry for about 2 minutes until cooked through and golden. Add the onion, garlic and carrot and fry for a further 3-4 minutes. Return the mince to the pan with the red wine, milk and oregano. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat and simmer for 5-6 minutes until reduced by half and the liquid has thickened slightly. Add the passata along with the tomato puree, stir through to evenly combined followed by the pasta and stock. Simmer for 15 minutes, stirring almost continuously until the pasta is al dente.
  3. Preheat the oven to 190°C/375°F/Gas Mark 5.
  4. Stir through half of each cheese along with half the basil leaves. Top with the remaining cheese, dispersing it evenly across the top and place in the oven to bake for 10-15 minutes until the cheese is golden and bubbling. Top with the remaining basil leaves and serve.

Recipe by Donal Skehan in collaboration with the NDC.