Ma Mussano’s Meat Ragu

Yes I am actually getting a minute to post these recipes.  And like I said I am actually blogging in my head and actions all day, it’s just finding the time to put them on the computer that is slowing me down, that and the laundry, and the quilting class I am trying to catch up on, and Gina’ s dance class, and Casey’s toilet training, and cleaning the house, and making food for the always hungry monsters that I live with, and the list goes on and on….

But enough of that, on to Ma Mussano’s (that would be my mother) Meat Ragu (or sauce or gravy as they say here in the Philadelphia area, which is wrong in so many ways, but again I digress).

*Oh little tidbit for ya… ‘ragu’ actually means sauce of meat and tomato  in Italian. Noni would always write it on her jars of sauce she made and froze.

Ma Mussano’s Meat Ragu


  • 1 to 1.5 pounds of hamburger (I use 90/10 but have also used ground turkey meat)
  • 1 45 ounce jar of Ragu (hey like I said it is what Ma always used even though we “doctor it”)
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (I personally like the petite cut but use what you have)
  • 1 medium onion chopped
  • 2 tsp granulated garlic
  • 2 tsp dry oregano
  • S&P to taste
  • 2 to 3 Tbsp grated parm cheese (about a palm full)

Brown your meat in pot, cook till no longer pink and crumble it up as you cook it. My Ma always said if you want it to be small pieces then stir as well as crumble the meat it breaks it up smaller.

Once the meat is half way cooked then I add the onions, garlic, S&P, and oregano and continue to cook till is no longer pink.

Once your meat is no longer pink then add your canned tomatoes, the jar of Ragu, and palm full of Parm cheese.

Now stir this all together, put a lid on the pot, bring it to a simmer then lower the heat, and cook on low for at least 20 minutes but if you have longer it is better to let it cook like 35 to 50 minutes. Cook your favorite pasta (this night we had piccolini bow-tie veggie pasta (cause it’s what I had) till al dente. Then spoon some of the sauce over pasta (after you have drained it, DUH!) Serve with nice garden salad, some nice fresh crusty Italian bread, and of course extra Parm cheese (unless you are my husband then you run from the Parm cheese). Dinner is done!

You can always get fancy and add fresh chopped parsley or basil if you wanted. AND I have made this exact same recipe with sweet Italian sausage instead of ground meat.


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