The fact is that there is no definitive recipe for a bolognese meat sauce, but to be worthy of the name, it should respect the traditions of the area.
Awake your appetite! – that’s what ragoutier – the French origin of the term ragù – is calling you for. Beef deprived from the fatty part of belly serves as the prominent ingredient and defines the oiliness; celery, carrots, onions, tomato sauce and red wine are altogether blended in, creating a wonderful journey of flavors.
Why are our renowned Lasagne alla Bolognese or Tagliatelle alla Bolognese so particular? Well, yes, as a base to these plates, ragù makes it true. Relax yourself if you cannot find one consistent taste of ragù once you come to Bologna, every family has their tradition of selecting ingredients and Bologneses are so proud of their kitchen that there should be no rule on cooking it in this food loving region.
The earliest recipe for a meat-based sauce served with pasta was first documented in the 18th century. In 1891, Pellegrino Artusi published a cookbook named La Scienza in Cucina e L’Arte di Mangiar Bene (The Science of cooking and The Art of Fine Dining) where a recipe of a meat based sauce characterized as Bolognese made its appearance.
His recipe is supposed to originate from mid-19th century when Artusi spent a considerable time in Bologna. However, it only partially resembles the Ragù alla Bolognese that is traditionally associated with tagliatelle. He also recommended serving this sauce with medium size fresh pasta to be cooked until it was firm, and then flavored with the sauce and Parmigiano cheese.
In 1892, the Accademia Italiana della Cucina (Italian Academy of Cuisine) recorded and deposited a recipe for "classic Bolognese ragù" at the Bologna Chamber of Commerce.