Anolini in brodo is a typical dish from the region of Parma that intrigued me when I enjoyed it at Locanda Mariella. The small round ravioli are filled with stale bread that is soaked in meat jus. The result is a tasty meaty flavor but with a lighter texture that is very pleasant. The ravioli are served in a meath broth (brodo di carne). The nice thing about this recipe is that it can be made from leftover meat scraps, bones, and stale bread. So it is a poor man’s festive dish, but tastes great! As always with traditional Italian recipes, there are countless variations. I have made the filling with stracotto of beef shin that I prepared on purpose, but you could certainly prepare this with leftover jus from a roast instead. This was our primo piatto for Christmas.
Serves 8 as primo piatto
For the brodo di carne / meat broth
750 grams (1.66 lb) beef bones
1 chicken carcass
1 slice of been shin, about 300 grams (.66 lb)
1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 celery stalk, 1 tomato, all chopped
For the stracotto (this will yield about 250 grams)
1 slice of beef shin, about 300 grams (.66 lb)
1 onion, 1 carrot, 1 celery stalk, all finely minced
60 ml (1/4 cup) passata di pomodoro (sieved tomatoes)
120 ml (1/2 cup) red wine
some meat broth, from above
fat from the meat broth, from above
For the anolini
stracotto, from above
brodo di carne, from above
125 grams stale white bread (without crust)
125 grams freshly grated parmigiano reggiano
dash of freshly grated nutmeg
fresh pasta dough made from 4 eggs and about 400 grams (3 1/3 cups) Italian 00 flour
Place the beef shin, beef bones, and chicken carcass in a roasting tray…
…and roast in the oven at 225C/440F until nicely browned, about half an hour.
Italian recipes for brodo di carne often do not roast the meat and bones, but it really enhances the flavor.
Chop the vegetables.
Place the chopped vegetables and the roasted meat and bones in a stockpot or pressure cooker. Add boiling water to the roasting tray, and scrape with a wooden spatula to get all of the flavor into the water.
Add this water to the stockpot or pressure cooker.
Add more water such that it is barely covered.
Bring to a boil and allow to simmer, covered, for 4 hours, or bring to pressure and pressure cook for 2 hours.
Strain the broth through a fine sieve and discard the solids.
Spoon off the fat that will float on top of the broth, which is easier after the broth has cooled off.
Put that fat in a small pot or casserole.
Stir over medium heat until most remaining water has evaporated from the fat (which you can tell by the size of the bubbles and it will start to darken in color).
Brown the beef shin in this fat on both sides, then take it out of the pot, and reserve.
Add the finely minced vegetables (I used a food processor for this)…
…and stir over medium-high heat until the vegetables are golden brown.
Deglaze with the red wine.
Allow the red wine to reduce by half to burn off the alcohol.
Add the passata di pomodoro and the clove, and bring to a boil.
Return the reserved beef shin to the pot.
Add just enough of the brodo di carne to cover the meat.
Cover, but leave the lid ajar.
Regulate the heat such that it simmers very slowly with only a few bubbles.
Simmer the stracotto like that over low heat until the meat falls apart, about 12 hours (!). Stir it regularly.
When it is done, remove the bone, but scoop the marrow out of the bone and add it to the stracotto. The stracotto can be prepared in advance and stored in the refrigerator.
To make the filling, place the bread (without crust) in the food processor…
…and process it until it has been reduced to crumbs.
Add the stracotto, and “pulse”…
…until mixed. Then add the parmigiano, and “pulse” again…
…until mixed. Taste and adjust the seasoning with salt, remembering that for any ravioli the filling should taste slightly too salty if you taste it by itself.
If the filling seems a bit dry (this depends on how dry your bread and stracotto are), add a bit of brodo di carne and mix.
Transfer the filling to a bowl, cover, and allow to firm up in the refrigerator.
Place small heaps of filling, about the size of a hazelnut, on the sheet of dough such that the heaps will be in the center when you fold the sheet in half lengthwise.
Seal the dough around the filling using your fingers, trying to avoid trapping any air inside.
Use a circular cutter with a diameter of about 3 cm (1 1/4 inch) to cut out the anolini. In Italy this is also done with a special tool.
Keep going until you have used up all of the filling.
Bring the brodo di carne to a boil and adjust the seasoning with salt, then keep it hot.
Boil the anolini in salted water for about 3 minutes. You could also boil the anolini in the broth, but that will make the broth cloudy.
Serve the anolini in the broth.
We enjoyed this with a slightly aged Sangiovese di Romagna, a SanPatrignano Avi 2016 to be precise. An aged red is nice with this.
Deep fried mozzarella with tuna and almonds is a nice antipasto.