OXTAIL RAGU WITH SWEET POTATO GNOCCHI
This past month has been insane, moved from Portland, Oregon to Kansas City, Missouri. I have been living out of a suitcase for 3 weeks, started a new job, and have went from spending every moment with Rye to having to leave him. In this 3 weeks I didn't cook a single thing! This weekend we finally are all unpacked and settled into our new house. To celebrate I made a big batch of Oxtail Ragu. I was feeling rusty but it turned out great!
The ragu does make a lot, so freeze leftovers for later use.
5 pounds oxtail
Freshly Ground Black Pepper
All purpose flour
1/2 cup olive oil
1 large celery stalks, coarsely chopped
2 large carrots, peeled, chopped
1 large onion, very coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
5 garlic cloves sliced
2 28-ounce cans whole peeled tomatoes
4 oil-packed anchovy fillets (optional, but highly recommend adding)
½ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
3 cups dry red wine
1 parmesan rind (go to local cheese counter and ask if they have any or cut rind off parmesan yourself)
1 -2 cups chicken broth
2 large sweet potatos
4 cups whole milk ricotta cheese
1 cup Parmesan cheese
3 teaspoons salt
7 cups flour (more for dusting)
Toss oxtails, flour, salt and pepper in a large bowl until oxtails are evenly coated. Heat oil in a large heavy pot over medium-high. Working in batches, cook oxtails in a single layer, turning occasionally, until browned all over, 15–20 minutes. Transfer oxtails to a plate as they’re done.
Cook celery, carrots, and onion in same pot until brown about 10- 15 minutes. Add garlic, cook until softened. Add the tomatoes, breaking with your hands, and releasing their juices. Add anchovies (if using), red pepper flakes, red wine, and parmesan rind. Return oxtail to pot. Pour chicken broth over oxtails to cover. Season to taste with salt and pepper, and bring to a boil. Turn the heat to medium low. Cover almost completely with a lid and gently simmer for 3 - 3 1/2 hours or until meat falls off bone.
Once sauce is complete remove parmesan rind. Remove oxtails and pick meat from bones and shred into small pieces. Return meat to pot and fold it into sauce; discard bones.
Prick the potato all over with a fork. Microwave on high for 10 to 15 minutes or until extremely tender, turning the potato once. Cool slightly. Cut potato in half; scoop out flesh from potato into a bowl and mash with a fork.
Mix squash, ricotta, parmesan, and salt in a large bowl. Gradually add flour, mixing until dough holds together and is almost smooth and slightly sticky. If dough is very sticky, add more flour by tablespoonfuls. Turn dough out onto floured surface; knead gently but briefly just until smooth.
On a floured surface, cut the dough into 4 pieces, rolling each into a 12 inch long rope and about 1/2 inch thick. Cut into 1/2 inch pieces, dust with flour, and arrange in a single layer on a lightly floured rimmed baking sheet.
Working in batches, cook gnocchi in a large pot of boiling salted water until they float. With a slotted spoon transfer to a large plate or baking sheet
Heat oil in a large nonstick skillet over medium. Add half of the gnocchi to skillet, arrange in a single layer, and cook, undisturbed, until browned and crisp underneath, about 3 minutes. Toss to turn and cook until other side is browned and crisp, about 2 minutes. Repeat with remaining gnocchi. Divide gnocchi among bowls and top with ragu sauce and gently toss. Top with parmesan cheese.