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Valentine's Day Recipe: Gino Angelini's Saffron Tagliatelle with Prosciutto Ragu

If you are in a relationship and the following is news to you, you are in trouble: Tomorrow is Valentine’s Day. If, indeed, this is new information, you should probably give up on the idea of a romantic dinner in one of L.A.’s finer restaurants. And frankly, you’re better off. We always opt to spend the holiday at home, cooking up something special for our special someone. It’s certainly more intimate, definitely cheaper, and putting your sentiments into a soulful dish means a heck of a lot more than scrawling it in a greeting card. (Tastier, too.) As Disney’s Lady and the Tramp taught us, few foods effuse passion quite like pasta. At his new West Hollywood showpiece, RivaBella, celebrated chef Gino Angelini has crafted a menu chock-full of the traditional Italian strands we’ve come to love him for. His handmade tagliatelle infused with aromatic saffron and tossed with a slow-simmered prosciutto ragu is about as romantic as is comes. There’s work involved, sure, but your beloved is worth every minute of scrubbing flour off the counters, aren’t they? Happy Valentine’s Day!

Tagliatelle allo Zafferano con Ragu di Proscuitto
By Executive Chef Gino Angelini

(Serves 3)

Ingredients

Pasta Dough:
7 ounces Mondako flour
1 egg
1 egg yolk
1/8 cup whole milk
1 ½ teaspoons saffron threads
 
Prosciutto Ragu:
1 ½ cup prosciutto, small dice
½ cup carrots, small dice
½ cup celery, small dice
½ cup onions, small dice
1 bay leaf
¾ cup white wine
6 ounces cherry tomatoes (canned)
2 ounces tomato paste
2 cups veggie stock
6 tablespoons olive oil
Black pepper to taste
 
Directions
 
Pasta:
 
1.  Steep together the saffron threads and milk slowly over a low flame
2.  Combine flour, egg, and egg yolk in a medium bowl and add saffron and milk mixture
3.  Knead together all ingredients on a floured surface
4.  Roll out the dough on a floured surface with a pasta roller on a #4 setting or with a rolling pin until dough is between 1/8 and 1/16 of an inch
5.  Cut the dough into strips and boil in salted water for approximately 2 minutes
 
Prosciutto Ragu:
 
1.  Heat olive oil over medium heat in a medium stock pot
2.  Sauté the prosciutto, carrots, celery, and onions in olive oil until the vegetables are tender
3.  Deglaze with white wine
4.  Add cherry tomatoes, tomato paste, veggie stock, and bay leaf and simmer for 1 hour
5.  Season with black pepper to taste