"Like all good family recipes, each is unique in its own way of doing things. This is a recipe handed down by my mother-in-law Vincenza Jones (nee Tattoli), whose family comes from the city of Molfetta in the Puglia region of southern Italy. This is peasant food at its most beautiful." Melissa Leong. This recipe is by Vincenza Jones via Melissa Leong.
Ù tridd is the name of the pasta made by tearing sheets of parsley-inlaid pasta into small pieces, but also lends itself to the name of this entire dish, made by stewing secondary cuts for hours in sugo until tender, then serving the tender, silk pasta in the strained broth with a little of the meat.
For the pasta
- 3 cups fine semolina
- 3 cups Tipo 00 pasta flour (plain flour will do if that’s all you have)
- 4 eggs
- 1 handful continental parsley leaves, finely chopped
- 1 - 1¼ cups lukewarm water (you won’t need all, but use as needed)
- Extra flour, to roll out the pasta
For the broth
- 2 veal shins (you can also use lamb shanks or beef ossobuco)
- 2 carrots, peeled and roughly chopped
- 2 celery stalks, peeled and roughly chopped
- 1 large brown onion, peeled and quartered
- 1 few sprigs of fresh parsley
- 500 ml tomato sugo (Italian tomato sauce, see Notes)
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano, to serve
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Resting time 2 hours to dry out the pasta
1. To make the pasta, in the bowl of a stand mixer with a dough hook attachment, add the semolina, pasta flour and eggs and mix on a low setting. Once combined, add the parsley and mix.
2. Gradually add water until the dough comes together. Continue mixing until the dough is no longer sticky and has become soft and pliable.
3. Turn the dough out onto a clean, lightly floured surface and roll the dough into a log roughly 50 cm long and 20 cm wide. Cut sections around 3 cm and pass them through a pasta roller several times so that the dough is smooth and uniform in thickness (around setting 3-4). Set aside to dry for at least 2 hours on a wooden dowl - a clothes drying rack will also suffice.
4. Once dry, tear the pasta sheets into small pieces around the size of your pinky thumbprint. The beauty of this dish is that you don’t have to be too careful, just make sure the pieces are roughly the same size. Set aside to continue to dry out until ready to use. This pasta can be completely dried out and stored for later use.
5. To make the broth, bring a heavy-based saucepan or pot to medium-high heat and add a good slug of olive oil.
6. When the pan is hot, sear the shanks until lightly browned on all sides. Throw in the carrots, celery and onion and parsley and stir to combine. Cook for about 3-4 minutes until the onion starts to go translucent. Pour in the sugo and then top with enough water to cover the shanks. Bring to the boil, season liberally with salt and freshly ground black pepper.
7. Reduce to low heat, cover and simmer for 90 minutes. Skim any fat if necessary. Season again to taste at the end. When the shanks are falling apart, strain the liquid from the solids. Reserve the meat, lightly shred, then set aside.
8. To serve, bring a pot of salted water to the boil. Once boiling, throw in a good handful of the pasta per person and cook for 4-5 minutes or until tender. Strain and refresh in cold water.
9. In a separate pot, bring the deliciously meaty tomato broth to the boil. Add the cooked pasta and shredded meat. Season to taste, then serve immediately, topped with finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano, or any sharp, hard Italian cheese, some freshly cracked black pepper and chopped parsley, if desired.
• You can purchase sugo, Italian tomato sauce, from supermarkets, delis and grocers.
• You can do this all by hand, but it makes it a lot easier to have these pieces of equipment. A stand mixer with a dough hook attachment and a pasta roller to roll out the sheets to a uniform thickness.
Photography and styling by Melissa Leong. Food preparation by Vincenza Jones.