If you watch a lot of TV cooking shows then most probably you had heard the word ragout a lot of times, well what is it?
Ragout is simply a really fancy word to define a hearty stew cooked very slowly over low heat. It is of French in origin but Italians have their own version called ragu. There are no rules in what ingredients to choose but usually meats and mushrooms are quite the popular ones, once cooked this is then served with/over pasta, bread or potatoes. The word came from the French word “ragoûter” which means “to revive the appetite” which properly defines if a dish is cooked in such traditional way.
This method of cooking dates back as early as 1600 in France and the most traditional way of making this type of stew is by cooking it very slow over low heat, but before the stewing happens meats and other ingredients are browned in the pan before any liquids are added. When the liquid is then added it is cooked over fire or wood stove in very low heat during the course of the day so the flavours slowly mature during the cooking process. Having said that the best way to serve dishes like this is on its second day where flavours have mellowed and blended really well. This recipe for example is a great ragout and you need to have a lot patience when making this but don’t worry you don’t need to wait for two days like how they do it in old France, if you can’t wait you can have it after 2 hours but if you want to make the most of it consume it on the next day.