Italian poutine

By John Alberti and Tony Alberti
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Here is an Italian Twintastico Twist on the famous Canadian Poutine. Adding some much needed Italian style!

SERVES
2
 TO
4
TOTAL TIME

Ingredients

For the Polenta fries:

  • 4 cups water
  • 1 cup polenta
  • 1/2 cup Parmigiano Reggiano cheese
  • 1/2 stick butter
  • 2 tablespoons fresh rosemary finely chopped
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt & pepper

For the Ragu sauce:

  • 225 grams minced beef
  • 225 grams minced pork
  • 1 cup Italian red wine
  • 1 tablespoon tomato paste
  • 5 cups tomato passata (purée)/sieved tomato
  • 10 fresh basil leaves finely chopped
  • 5 garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • Extra virgin olive oil
  • Salt and pepper
  • Parmigiano Reggiano to serve

For the Béchamel sauce:

  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 4 cups full-fat milk
  • 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 1 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg

Directions

For the Polenta fries:

  1. Bring the water to a boil and slowly whisk in the polenta, stirring constantly. Season with salt and pepper and after a few minutes, once thickened, finely grate in the Parmigiano Reggiano, add the butter and stir in the rosemary and combine until smooth.
  2. Pour into a greased and lined 20 centimeter square tin and pop in the fridge to chill and firm up, about two hours. Preheat oven to 425F.
  3. Cut the chilled polenta into chunky fries and brush with olive oil. Arrange on a greased baking tray in a single layer and bake for 30 minutes, or until crisp and golden.

For the ragu sauce:

  1. Heat the oil in a large sauté pan and fry the garlic for a few minutes until golden, then crumble the meat between your fingertips and add to the pan and fry until brown – around ten minutes. Add the red wine and simmer for a further five minutes until it has reduced.
  2. Now stir in the tomato passata and tomato paste. Season with salt and pepper. Add the basil and simmer gently for three hours until reduced and thickened and always remember to stir the sauce throughout.

For the Bechamel sauce:

  1. Melt the butter in a large saucepan over a medium heat. Stir in the flour and cook for one minute until it becomes light brown in color. Gradually whisk in the milk, lower the heat and cook for ten minutes, whisking constantly. Once thickened, stir in the Parmigiano Reggiano and nutmeg. Season with salt and pepper.
  2. To serve, layer the polenta fries on a plate and cover with the ragu sauce and then the béchamel over the top and finish with a generous amount of freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano.

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