Pappardelle with Duck Ragu

Yield:
servings
Level:
Easy
Ingredients
Directions

Stir together flour and salt and add olive oil, stirring with a whisk. Add eggs and mix with hands until sticky. Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until dough stays together. Knead 5 to 8 minutes until pliable. Cover and allow to rest 15 minutes.

Ragu:

Wash duck legs and remove all fat. Pat dry.

In a thick bottomed casserole or Dutch oven, heat olive oil until smoking. Add duck legs and cook until brown on all sides and remove, about 10 to 12 minutes. Add onion, carrot, garlic and celery and cook until softened, about 7 to 9 minutes. Add wine, tomatoes, chicken stock and dried mushrooms and bring to a boil. Add duck legs and return to boil, lower heat, cover and allow to simmer for 1 hour. Remove duck legs and allow to cool. Pull all meat off the bones and return to pot, without the bones. Simmer uncovered for 30 minutes, or until quite thick. Season with salt and pepper and set aside.

In a large pot, bring 6 quarts of water to boil and add 2 tablespoons salt. Roll the pasta dough out to its thinnest setting and then cut by hand into pappardelle, about 1 to 11/4 inch thick.

Heat 2 cups duck ragu in a 12 to 14 inch saute pan until quite hot. Boil pappardelle until cooked, about 1 minute and drain well. Put hot pappardelle into pan with duck ragu and toss well. Pour into serving bowl and serve immediately.


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    I didn't have fresh duck but found a whole frozen duck, quartered it and even used the breasts. Fantastic flavor!
     
    This is the "Go To Meal" when Bobby Flay stops by for dinner! 
    This was by far one of the tastiest pasta dishes that we have ever made. 
    Reminiscent of a local restaurant that made a similar fantastic dish with slow-cooked beef. We decided to cook it in the oven instead and it turned out great! Our homemade pasta was awesome as well. Just had some for breakfast and looking forward to the rest of the leftovers.
    I adapted the recipe a bit. I didn't have canned tomatoes, so I substituted diced fresh tomatoes and a can of tomato paste. The recipe didn't call for seasoning, but I added a little sea salt and cracked pepper. Also, I kept the skin on the duck (who doesn't LOVE duck cracklin'?) and removed it after cooking it. I saved the cracklin' and diced it sprinkle on top of the dish with a little shaved parmigiano reggiano. Finally, I used high quality, store-bought pappardelle, but I want to try fresh next time. There will certainly be a next time! It was amazing! We are very lucky ducks!
    In a word. WOW! So rich and flavorful. I'm not usually a fan of duck but I definitely enjoy this preparation. As other reviewers have said, the hardest part is removing the skin and fat from the legs. Once that's accomplished, it's a ridiculously simple recipe to prepare. The only alterations I made were to rehydrate the dried mushrooms before adding to the pot as sometimes dirt/grit can sometimes be released during the rehydration process and I didn't want it in the sauce. Also added some chopped fresh thyme since it pairs so well with mushrooms. To get the most out of your duck legs.....don't throw away the skin and fat!! Add it to a saucepan with 1/2 cup of water and simmer on medium heat for an hour. You'll have about 2 cups of rendered duck fat for cooking and sautéing! Just strain it through some cheese cloth and put in a glass jar. I actually substituted half of the oil called for in the recipe with some of the duck fat to give the veggies more flavor.
    Sauce is delightfully easy to make as written and delectable to eat. The hardest part of this removing the skin from the duck legs. I used crushed Roma tomatoes instead of whole and a good quality dried papperdelle instead of making my own as the recipe suggests. Seems this would also be great served with a chunky pasta like penne rigati or rigatoni or even atop polenta. Not sure the recipe gives a "serves X" number but we had four servings and just a skoosh leftover. The leftover heated up nicely the next day.
    My boyfriend and I made this dish yesterday evening and we can't stop talking about how amazing it was. It truly was 'the best dish we've ever made.' Some changes that we made: we used 1.5 lbs of pork spare ribs, individually cut, instead of the duck, as we were not able to find fresh duck thighs anywhere locally, at this time of year. For preparation, we salt and peppered these and browned them in two tbs of olive oil for 15-20 minutes - after browning, removed the pork from the pan. We also added salt and pepper to the ragu, and a bit of garlic powder to kick up the flavor a bit more. Other than the aforementioned adjustments, we followed the recipe exactly and it was just spot on. We also use Delallo brand pappardelle and it was decent, but would definitely take the few extra minutes to make the homemade version next time. We served with fresh cracked pepper and salt, and a sprinkle of shaved cheese....perfection.
    Outstanding favors and a welcome addition to my duck preparation rotation. My only suggestion is to salt and pepper the duck before browning.
    Another great Batali recipe. You can't go wrong. Followed it as written and it turned out perfectly. Easy and it pleases the masses. Will definitely go into the regular rotation. 
     
    This ragu was fantastic. The hardest part of preparation was taking the skin off of the duck. Our local grocer did not have duck legs, so we bought a whole bird. The butcher quartered the duck. We used the two legs and thighs with half of a duck breast. It turned out wonderfully. Again, if you can get your butcher to take off the skin, that would would save time.
     
     It turned out great. Next time, instead of all the olive oil, I may half it and render some pancetta/bacon.
    This is such an easy dish to prepare, and everyone we served it to thought that we slaved to make for them. It has made duck lovers out of those who disliked duck, and created new duck fans from those who never tasted duck. Present this in a lovely white dish garnished with appropriate seasonal items, and your elegant pasta is sure to please all who partake. Thanks Mario for another signature dish I can make easily and is enjoyed by all.
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