TV chef shares his British take on the Italian classics

Friday, 11 October 2019

Combining Calabrian oil with Leicestershire farmed beef, chef and TV presenter Joe Hurd has shared his British take on a classic Italian dish.

The roving reporter from BBC’s Saturday Kitchen and ITV’s the Munchbox, who describes himself as ‘built in Yorkshire from Italian parts’, has set out to increase the use of locally produced beef in simple but delicious meals.

With his Italian food pedigree and dashing good looks, his contribution to the new ‘Off the Block’ video series – with his take on beef ragu – is likely to get viewers all of a sizzle.

“In Italian dishes when we go to such efforts with sourcing the right tomato paste or the correct olive oil, you have to make that effort with the beef. The way the dish turns out is a testament to the farmer because the meat really does make it special. It’s a wonderful quality,” said Joe.

“It’s worth sourcing some wonderful mince – not just an afterthought. I got mine from the farm in just near where I live in Leicestershire. One mistake people make with a bolognaise is putting the meat straight in with the vegetables. Brown it off, cook it for about half an hour, add a little bit of white wine to give it that flavour, that sweetness of the grape – it’s the best way to make the meat sing.” 

The initiative is supported by us, working on behalf of English beef and lamb farmers.

Beef and Lamb Quality Scheme Manager Karl Pendlebury said: “Our farmers produce fantastic quality meat which can shine in dishes from around the world. That’s what we’d like people to take away when they watch the personal experience Joe has shared in his delicious recipe. Inspiring people to be innovative, even with the most comforting of dishes, which use quality beef and lamb.”

Joe Hurd’s video can be seen along with many more from other top chefs at