Beef and Tomato Ragu

This is one of our favourite family recipes and minced beef is a great source of iron. is recipe is written to make one large batch that you can cook ahead and freeze (it freezes really well). It is incredibly useful to have on standby: serve with pasta or rice, use in a lasagne or as a base for a cottage pie (just top with mash).

I hope this is a recipe you will make again and again. 

prep time 20 mins - cooking time 1 to 1.5 hours
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, or butter
  • 1 onion, peeled and diced
  • 2 carrots, washed, peeled and diced
  • 1 garlic clove, peeled and whole
  • 500g lean mince beef (I use mince with 5% or 10% fat, organic and ideally grass fed beef - buy the best quality you can get)
  • 680g tomato passata, (a standard bottle is 680g - 690g)
  • 200ml water 

Take a large ceramic pot and add butter/ or oil, then the chopped onion and carrot; gently saute until softened for 10 minutes. Add garlic clove whole, cook for 2 minutes, you remove this at the end to cooking. Next add the mince, breaking it up with a spoon or spatula as you stir. You want the mince to colour but not brown, to avoid toughening the meat. Finally, add the tomato passata and water. Bring up to a gentle boil and then lower heat to a simmer for 1.5 – 2.5 hours. Stirring occasionally. The sauce should reduce, thicken and intensify in flavour.

From 12 months onwards this minced ragu should be a good texture for your little one (before then you can blitz until you have a smooth sauce).  

 
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Miriam Cooper