Polenta with Ox Tail Ragu – Mum is back in town!

My sister and her family moved into their new Lavender Bay house recently and in true Italian style, my parents flew over from Perth to help with the move. Scotty and I visited my sister’s place today to see mum and dad, check out the new pad and help with the hanging of some paintings. As I hadn’t seen mum and dad for months it was great to see them both, and wonderful to smell familiar scents wafting from the kitchen.

After a quick tour of the new house I wandered back down to the kitchen to figure out what mum was cooking up for lunch. She told me she had been cooking an ox tail ragu for the last couple of hours to be served on a bed of polenta – very contadina style (rustic).

I quickly got behind the kitchen bench to help her with the cooking. I hadn’t made polenta with her before and wanted to watch the-woman-who-never-measures-an-ingredient at work. It was wonderful to be cooking beside her again.

The dish we served up for lunch was extraordinarily flavourful – the meat peeled of the bone effortlessly and the rich sauce flavoured the polenta beautifully. At the lunch table, dad told a story about growing up as one of seven kids in Italy. His mum used to have an unvarnished wooden table in their kitchen where she would serve the polenta directly onto the wood dotted with Italian sausage pieces. His nine family members would then each get a spoon and start eating the polenta, occasionally getting to the good bits. Apparently, the rules were you had to eat your way through from the edge till you got to the little meat treasures before you could eat them. Dad said there was always a race to eat quickly and get to the good bits before anyone else!


  1. Anonymous says

    So the last remaining family from the west misses out on the family lunch.
    We hope you all missed us very much and hoped we were there to share this banquet with you all. LV the rest of us

  2. says

    Don’t worry… when Scotty and I are home in September we’ll get mum to cook us all the things we love – and you’re invited!

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