Monday, November 18, 2013

Pasta Genovese alla Nonna

Showing me the tricks of her trade, 2003
These days my sweet little Nonna remembers the faces of the people she loves but much else is just a haze.  Now that she doesn't cook, I am so grateful that 10 years ago I stood beside her in the kitchen and watched her make one of my family's beloved dishes.  To this day, mention of it makes my husband and my father's eyes light up.  

"Genovese" is what she always called it, though, there's no basil to be found.  This one is authentic from her childhood and is absolutely perfect for a cold Fall or Winter night.  This pasta sauce is "peasant style" which is the polite way to say it uses very inexpensive ingredients.  From humble beginnings come memorable cuisine.  It also happens to be super simple and one you should put on your must-try list.  

Pasta Genovese
2 lbs. of onions sliced thinly into strips
1 and 1/2 lbs. boneless chuck steak (cut the meat into 4 large cubes and remove visible fat)
1 lb. hot linguini cooked in salted water
Parmigiano Reggiano to taste

Cover bottom of a dutch oven or thick pot with olive oil
Warm the oil, season meat with salt and pepper, then brown the meat on medium high
Cook for 5 minutes then add the onions.
Add 1 cup of beef broth and bring to a boil,
Turn down heat to a simmer and cook, covered for 2+ hours, until meat is easily falling apart into sauce.
Season with salt and pepper to taste.
Serve over hot linguini with lots of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

I hope you enjoy a small part of the legacy that is my sweet little Grandma.
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