Sneaky Vegetable Beef & Pork Ragu

It’s been a while since I posted a new recipe. But it’s also been a while since I’ve thrown a bunch of stuff together and it’s worked.

I made braised pork & beef for tacos last week, and saved half of it for a ragu.  I’d been craving a super meaty spaghetti sauce, but was also wanting to make some polenta.  I always forget how easy it is, how great it works in place of pasta, and how delicious it ends up being.  Every time.

And I wanted to use up the rest of the spinach in the fridge before I went grocery shopping, and I had run out of fruit for green smoothies.  So I blended it into the sauce.  Pretty sneaky, huh?

Sneaky Vegetable Beef & Pork Ragu

3 servings
Calories: 381
Fat: 21.77g
Carbs: 18.17g
Fiber: 5.12g
Protein: 26.46g

1.5-2 C leftover braised pork and/or beef*
2 tbs EVOO
1/2 onion or 1 large shallot, diced
1 carrot, peeled & diced
2 tsp minced garlic
3 C spinach
2 C low sodium chicken broth
1 6-oz can tomato paste
1/2 C white or red wine (whatever is on hand!)
Bay leaf
Salt & Pepper
Other spices, like oregano or rosemary (opt, I left them out)

Heat the oil in a large pan over medium heat.  Sauté the onion and carrot until soft (4-5 minutes), add the garlic for the last minute or so.  Put the spinach and 1 C chicken broth in the blender and blend.  Add the tomato paste and sautéed vegetables and keep blending until pretty smooth (you could probably use an immersion blender if you have one, though I’m not sure).  If you’re having trouble getting it smooth, add a little more chicken broth.

Put the blended sauce back into the pan and add the wine and remaining chicken broth.  Throw the bay leaf, salt & pepper, and any other remaining spices and allow the sauce to simmer for about 10 minutes over low heat.  Serve over polenta.

*Braised Beef & Pork:
1.5-2 lbs boneless pork shoulder
1.5-2 lbs beef (I found a bottom sirloin on sale)
3-4 lbs of beef or pork
2 tbs EVOO
1 large shallot, skinned and cut into halves
2 tsp minced garlic
1 tsp oregano
1 bay leaf
12 oz beer
Juice of 2 orange
1 can low sodium chicken broth (you may not use all of it)

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.

Heat the oil in a large, oven safe pot.  Cook the pork & beef until brown on all sides, about 4-5 minutes each side.  Add everything into the pot, adding the chicken broth until the liquid is about 2/3 up the sides of the meat.  Put a lid on it, and cook it for about 3 hours, turning the meat over halfway through.  Drain the liquid, and the meat should just fall apart.

I cooked the meat initially for tacos, adding some Tapatio, queso fresco and cilantro, so I used the remaining for the above ragu.


2 thoughts on “Sneaky Vegetable Beef & Pork Ragu

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