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Blaust's chicken thigh pasta sauce with herbs, tomatoes, and white wine (Il sugo de cosce de pollo Blaust)

Danye Bernadis runs a lovely small restaurant called Blaust in Lavarriano. Hi, specialized in the local style of cooking from Friuli-Venezia. he has spent years resuscitating old traditional recipes from the region and bringing them back to the table.

This is a classic from his menu. The ragu is light and not as overly cooked as we usually see. It is light, flavoured heavily with rosemary and sage and the tomatoes are just about cooked and fresh. The dish is flavourful and delicate. What I really liked about the dish was the absence of heavy oils and the summer flavour that came through. This is a dish perfect for summer, and you still crave a bowl of pasta.

Marcella says is a follow-up book from the doyen of Italian cooking. Marcella started as a teacher of Italian cuisine in her New York apartment. She has published a number of cookbooks that have changed the way America and the world view Italian cuisine. Her books are filled with history, anecdotes, and stories that give life to her dishes and their origins. This is a lovely book with a mix of contemporary and traditional recipes that are easy but flavourful.

For more recipes from this book click here.


1 1/2 chicken thighs, about 4-5, finely ground into a mince

1 tablespoon olive oil

2 tablespoons butter

1/3 cup onions, finely diced

1/3 cups carrots, finely diced

1/2 cup celery, finely diced

Salt, to taste

1/2 teaspoon pepper

10 mint leaves, roughly torn

1 cup dry white wine

2 cups tomatoes, finely diced

1/2 teaspoon dried rosemary leaves

1/2 teaspoon dried sage

Zest of 1 lime or lemon

Pasta, spaghetti or fettuccini.

Grated Parmesan cheese

Heat the oil and butter in a pot and add the onion. Sautè on medium heat till the onion is lightly golden, about 3-4 minutes.

Add the carrot and celery and cook for 2-3 minutes, tossing the ingredients well to coat them with the oil.

Add the ground chicken, salt and pepper and cook for 7-9 minutes until the chicken is cooked. Turn the meat frequently so it cooks evenly. Also, break up the small pieces to give a fine mince consistency without lumps.

Add the mint and white wine and cook till the white wine bubbles away. Add the tomatoes and cook for 40 minutes till the sauce is thick and the oils have separated from the sauce. You should be able to see clear bubbles of oil floating on the surface.

Add the herbs, rosemary, sage, lime/, lemon zest and mix in well. Simmer for 5-7 minutes more.

Cook the pasta according to the package directions, minus 1 minute for al dante. Drain and set aside.

To serve, add a serving of pasta to a bowl and top with the heated sauce. Grate Parmesan cheese on top and serve immediately.

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