At this point, I taste and correct for salt, which sweet fatty flavors like those of a gravy sauce need in order to bloom. I might also add a couple of sprigs of parsley for these last 15 minutes of cooking, for fresh scent. When the cooking is done, I turn off the heat and leave the meats to cool in their sauce, during which the residual heat finishes the cooking. If you take the meats out of their sauce before they’ve cooled, they’re liable to dry out. (If you must do so, cover them with a thick layer of protective sauce, and cover the container you put them in.)
(from Blog the Tenth)
* Put the soup bones in the oven at 400 degrees to roast aromatic, while with a food mill you puree into a big sauce pot 4 or 5 large quart-sized can of pelati (whole peeled tomatoes imported from Italy--never not whole! never not imported!). Crush 2 or 3 garlic cloves hard, and toss them into the tomato puree, along with half a peeled potato and a half dozen whole black peppercorns. For aromatics, add in a bay leaf or two, if you have them, and a stem or two or three of fresh parsley. Add in a rounded tablespoon of coarse salt or a scanted tablespoon of table salt, and bring the puree to a simmer. Add the roasted soup bones whenever they smell stirring, and simmer them in the sauce, covered, for 20 or 30 minutes, before adding the ribs.
* Meanwhile, dry off and salt and pepper the ribs on both sides for sautéing. Heat a quarter-inch of regular olive oil, to sauté the ribs in at a steady simmer, until golden and spotted brown. Sauté the ribs in batches, vouchsafing them space to breathe and brown, and pile them up in a dish, to drip fat. When they're all ready for it, add them into the simmering puree and simmer them uncovered for 90 minutes, before adding the chicken and sausage for an additional 30-40 minutes of cooking.
* If you're using chunks of chuck or top round, or shank, then salt and pepper them on both sides, and brown them in the same oil as the ribs, and add them after the ribs, and at least 60 minutes before the chicken and sausage. * Before browning the chicken and sausage, strain your oil clean and wipe out your frying pan with paper towels, before returning the oil into it and to a simmer. Sauté the chicken, like the other meats, until speckled brown; after a rest, add it to the simmering sauce for 40 minutes of simmering. Then lightly brown the sausage, and add them for 30 minutes of simmering.
* For meatballs, lightly mix together: a pound of coarsely ground fatty beef (and maybe pork too); 4 heaping tablespoons of grated Pecorino Romano; 4 temperate tablespoons of seasoned bread crumbs; a small onion, sliced very thin and sautéd golden in butter and olive oil; a good sized clove of garlic chopped very fine; a plamful of chopped fresh parsley; a shower of of slat and grindings of black pepper; and enough milk to soften the mix to malleable. Roll handfuls of meats lightly between your palms to form large airy meatballs. Chill them until you're ready to brown them very lightly at a very gentle simmer over very mild heat on four sides, handling them ever so gently with a spoon and fork. Add them into the simmer gravy for the last 15 or 20 minutes of cooking.
* When rib meat begins to fall off a rib or two, and chuck to strand, then the gravy is gravy. Turn off the heat and let the meats cool down in the gravy, to keep them moist. When tepid, the meats can be removed to another pan and topped with gravy, for reheating later in the oven; or else they can be reheated in the gravy pot together with the gravy, when time comes to sauce the pasta.