Ragu of Beef alla Stella Maltagliati

Author: Don Miller


This is a wonderful fall or winter casserole ragu made from beef, onion, pasta, and spices that is inexpensive to make. Not only is it delicious, it fills the kitchen with a fragrant aroma that instantly whets your appetite.

The Italian word “Maltagliati” has a direct translation of “poorly made” pasta. Traditionally when raviolis and other classical Italian pastas were made, the scraps were saved and thrown into this ragu rather than throw them out.  This particular dish is one shared by our recent guest, Chef Myles Anton, who came to Notre Dame to cook for us.  I know you will enjoy the flavors along with how easy and inexpensive it is to make. Buon appetito!

Ingredient Procedure
  • Ground beef - ½ lb.
  • Water - 1 oz.
  • Baking soda - 1/8 tsp.
  • Beef round (1/2 inch dice) - 18 oz.
  • Italian seasoning - To taste
  • Olive oil - As needed
  • Spanish onion (diced) - 2 cups
  • Garlic (minced) - 1 oz.
  • Marjoram, dry - 2 tsp.
  • Veal or Beef stock - 1 quart
  • Tomato puree - ½ cup
  • Salt and pepper - To taste
  • Pasta, cooked, assorted - 2 lbs.
  1. Mix baking soda with water to dissolve. Add to ground beef and mix by hand to spread throughout. Let sit for 20 minutes
  2. Season the diced beef generously with salt, pepper, Italian seasoning, and toss in oil. Sear diced meat in saute pan until nicely browned on the outside. Remove from pan, let cool.
  3. Return pan to range and deglaze with a small amount of the veal stock to bring up the crust from the pan. Save these drippings.
  4. Sweat onions, garlic, and marjoram in olive oil. Add ground beef and brown. Add the seared cubes of beef, drippings, veal stock and tomato puree. Simmer for 4 ½ hours until beef is tender. Season to taste with emphasis on black pepper component.
  5. Add the cooked pasta and serve in appropriate dish.