Pasta with Short Rib Ragu

Northern Italian ragus are famously hearty, relying heavily on meat and lightly on tomato. We followed that tradition using both beef and pork for balance and tomato powder as the base for umami and brightness.
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  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 2 hr 45 min
  • Active: 35 min
  • Yield: 6 to 8 servings
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Ingredients

3 small beef short ribs (1 1/2 to 2 pounds)

3 country-style pork ribs (1 1/2 to 2 pounds)

Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 tablespoons olive oil

4 cloves garlic, chopped

2 carrots, finely diced 

1 onion, finely chopped

3 tablespoons tomato powder

2 tablespoons dried Italian seasoning

2 cups dry red wine

1 pound linguine or other long flat pasta

1 cup fresh parsley leaves, chopped 

1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan, plus more for serving

6 tablespoons unsalted butter, cubed, at room temperature 

Directions

  1. Generously sprinkle the beef and pork with salt and pepper.
  2. Heat the oil in a large heavy-bottomed pot with a lid or a Dutch oven over medium-high heat until shimmering but not smoking. Working in 2 batches if necessary to prevent overcrowding, add the meat to the pot in one layer and cook, without stirring, until dark brown, about 5 minutes. Flip the meat and brown the other side, about 5 minutes more. Transfer to a plate and discard all but 1 tablespoon fat from the pot. 
  3. Return the pot to the heat and add the garlic. Cook, stirring constantly, until starting to brown slightly, about 1 minute. Add the carrots and onion and cook, stirring often, until softened and golden, about 10 minutes. Stir in the tomato powder and Italian seasoning to coat the vegetables. Stir in the wine and bring to a boil; boil until the sauce is reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Return the meat to the pot and add 2 cups water. Return to a boil, cover, reduce to a low simmer and cook until the meat is tender and easily separates from the bone, about 2 hours.
  4. Transfer the meat to a cutting board and remove and discard the bones. Roughly chop the meat. Skim the ragu of excess fat. Return the meat to the pot and keep warm over low heat. 
  5. Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook according to the package directions for al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta water, then drain. 
  6. Add the pasta to the pot with the ragu and toss to coat. Stir in the parsley, Parmesan and butter. Add some of the pasta water, 1/4 cup at a time, to thin the sauce to the desired consistency. Serve with extra Parmesan on the side.