Rigatoni with Meat Sauce

By: Marge Perry & David Bonom


  • 2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onionfinely diced
  • 1 medium carrotpeeled, finely chopped
  • celery stalkfinely chopped
  • 1 tablespoon fresh oregano chopped
  • 12 ounces lean ground beef
  • garlic clovesminced
  • 1/2 cup dry red winesuch as Cabernet Sauvignon
  • 1 28 ounce can crushed tomatoes with basil
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 1 medium zucchini trimmed, cut into 1/2-inch dice
  • 12 ounces rigatoni pasta
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese
  • 1/3 cup fresh basil leavesthinly sliced


  1. Heat the oil in an Anolon 12" Vesta Cast Iron Skillet over medium heat. Add the onion, carrot, celery, and oregano and cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly softened, 4 to 5 minutes.
  2. Add the beef and garlic and cook, breaking the beef into smaller pieces with a wooden spoon, until the onion and beef are lightly browned, 9 to 10 minutes.
  3. Pour in the wine and cook until it is nearly evaporated, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the crushed tomatoes, tomato paste, and zucchini: bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until slightly thickened, 2 minutes.
  4. Stir in the rigatoni, salt, pepper, and 3 cups water; bring to a simmer and cook, stirring often, until sauce is somewhat thickened, about 18 minutes. Add 1 cup water and continue cooking until the pasta is tender, 9 to 10 minutes more.
  5. Serve the rigatoni topped with the Romano and basil.