Mimma Diana's Fennel Sausage Ragù

By Annabelle Chapple
July 5, 2016
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Author Notes: This recipe is from the co-owner and chef of Vine Restaurant in Brisbane, Australia. Puglia-born Mimma Diana gifted it to me when I interviewed her for the New Farm Village News last month.

To get the best results my tips are: taste before you salt as your sausage mince could be salty enough, as Mimma warned the sauce did dry out over the hour so I filled the empty tomato can with tap water and used that to top it up, seeing as the recipe only calls for half a cup of white wine open a bottle you’d want to drink (I used a medium-priced Sauvignon Blanc). The ragù works best served over pillowy gnocchi but you could try pappardelle or orecchiette and for a punch of freshness sprinkle with leftover basil leaves before serving.
Annabelle Chapple

Serves: 4

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, diced
  • 1.1 pounds fennel (or Italian) sausages, casings removed
  • 0.5 cups dry white wine
  • 14 ounces (1 can) whole peeled Italian tomatoes
  • 10 fresh basil leaves, torn in half
  1. In a large heavy-based saucepan heat olive oil over medium heat, add onions and garlic, cook until translucent; about 7 minutes.
  2. Add sausage meat, breaking it up into crumbly pieces using a spoon, cook for about 10 minutes until browned.
  3. Stir in white wine, once it’s reduced add tomatoes, basil, salt and pepper to taste, and bring to a simmer.
  4. The sauce needs to cook uncovered for around 1 hour; if it’s looking dry add water (or chicken stock if you have it). The oil will rise to the top when the sauce ready - Mimma says that’s the secret to all good ragù.
  5. Serve over fresh gnocchi or pasta of your choice.

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