So, as we know Ragu Bolognese is the famous meat-sauce for pasta from Bologna, Italy. Now, hopefully by the time you read this part of the book, you’ve already made your first Ragu alla Bolognese. Well congratulations are in order to you, you’ve learned something that is infinitely important, and something that will serve you the rest of your life. You now know the infinite glories of the Bolognese, that lush pasta meat-sauce from Bologna, Italy known as Ragu Bolognese. You know the wonderful flavor, and are sure to crave it often. No problem, if you have a craving, you can just make it. You have the recipe, you’ve made it once or twice, you can make it any time you want.
So, you want to throw a dinner party for friends? I certainly hope you do. If you’ve never done so before, I’d just like to tell you, you have no idea, and I’m sure you’ll be surprised, surprised how great it will be, ” a Party alla Bolognese.”
Making this famed Ragu and throwing a party centered around the Bolognese where you’ll feed Maccheroni alla Bolognese to friends and family, this is such a wonderful thing, you just can’t imagine. Do it once and you’ll see. You will make your friends oh-so-happy in more ways than one. They will thank you and sing your praises, and you will feel their joy. A joy that you gave them by making them Ragu Bolognese. Yes it has this affect.
Throwing a dinner party you say? It seems so daunting. Hey, you’ve made Bolognese, throwing a dinner party centered around Bolognese is as easy as pie, and I’m going tell you how. You will amaze your friends with this one! Trust me! Hey, I’ve already told you pretty much, 90% of all you’ll need to know to do your first fabulous Party alla Bolognese. “What,” you say? Well I’ve written the recipe for you, and you’ve already made your first Bolognese, maybe even two or three by now. You know how to make one of the World’s great dishes Pasta alla Bolognese, all you need now is some good music, good Italian Wine, and some sort of Salad or Antipasto to start you off.
You will make the Bolognese ahead of time, either the day before or early in the day before your party starts. You can either make a salad to have before the Bolognese, but a better choice would be either a Caprese Salad of fresh Mozzarella & Tomatoes, a lovely mixed Antipasto, or something as easy as Prosciutto & Melon would be very apropos, considering the Bolognese and the famed Prosciutto di Parma are both from the same region in Italy of Emilia Romagna.
Working very gently with a wooden spoon or spatula, mix into the puréed potato a generous pinch of salt, the egg (optional) and enough flour to make a smooth, soft and only slightly sticky dough. Do not knead the dough or it will become gummy, just mix the ingredients together as gingerly as you can. Form the dough into a ball and place it on a well floured surface.
Then break off a handful of the dough and roll that with both hands until you have a ‘rope’ about the thickness of your thumb.
Cut this rope into 1 inch lengths. Take each bit of dough and flip it with your index finger against the inside of a fork (or if you have one, the special Rigagnocchi, or ‘gnocchi paddle’ pictured below, which you can find in some specialty food shops). This will cause the gnocchi to take on a concave shape with ridges on the outside, which will ‘catch’ any sauce you put on them.
Cook the Gnocchi in gently boiling well-salted water. They are done just as soon as they rise to the surface of the water.
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