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Lamb Shank

A true comfort dish – slow cooked lamb shanks in a thick flavorful sauce.  The best part about making this dish is that you’ll have 2 nights of meals.  The first night serve them on the bone over polenta, mashed potatoes or rice.  The next night you can make a Lamb Ragu Pasta — shred any left over lamb off the bone, mix the lamb and left over sauce with Due Cellucci Traditional sauce and serve over pasta.

IngredientsLamb Shank Finished2

4 lamb shanks, around 1 lb each shank
2 tsp salt
2 – 3 tbsp olive oil
1 cup onion, finely diced (1 small or 1/2 large)
1 cup carrot, finely diced (2 large carrots)
1 cup celery, finely diced (3-4 med stalks)
3 garlic cloves, minced
2½ cups red wine, full bodied
28 oz  can crushed tomatoes
1 jar of Due Cellucci Traditional sauce
2 tbsp tomato paste
2 cups chicken stock
5 sprigs of thyme (you will remove these at end so can tie them together to make it easier to find)
2 Bay leaves


Preheat the oven to 350oF

  1. Sprinkle lamb shanks with 1 tsp of salt and black pepper.
  2. Heat 2 tbsp of olive oil in a heavy based pot over high heat. Sear the lamb shanks in batches until brown all over, about 5 minutes. Remove lamb onto a plate and drain excess fat from the pot.
  3. Turn the heat down to medium low. Heat remaining 1 tbsp of olive oil in the same pot. Add the onion, carrot, celery and garlic. Sauté for 10 minutes until the onion is translucent.
  4. Add the red wine and turn up the heat to medium high. Bring it to a simmer, scraping the bottom of the pan to mix all the brown bits into the wine. Simmer for 3 minutes to evaporate the alcohol a bit.
  5. Add the remaining ingredients (including remaining 1 tsp salt and pepper) and stir to combine.
  6. Place the lamb shanks into the pot.
  7. Bring back up to simmer, cover, then transfer to the oven for 2 hours. (about 1 hour in you can scrape down all the yummy goodness that is sticking to the inside of the pot)
  8. Turn the lamb shanks, cover, then return to the oven for another 30 minutes or more if needed. The lamb should be very tender, the exposed surface above the liquid should be browned and the sauce should be reduced down to about 1/2 of the original amount. (so cooking about 2½-3 hours in total)
  9. Carefully transfer the lamb to a serving plate and pick out the thyme sprigs and bay leaves.
  10. Optional: Use a stick blender to puree the sauce to make it smooth and thick. If your veggies are cut fine enough you won’t need to do this step
  11. Adjust salt and pepper to taste.

Serve the lamb shanks on mashed potato, polenta or cauliflower puree with lots of sauce!

LEFTOVERS: Shred the leftover lamb. Add a jar of Due Cellucci traditional sauce to the leftover lamb and sauce. Heat and serve over your favorite pasta.

Lamb Shank BraisedCarrots, Onions, Celery SauteLamb Shank in pot2

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Chef Enzo’s Meatballs

My dad’s meatballs are just delicious.  They just are.  I know this recipe makes more meatballs than you can possibly eat in one sitting, but if you’re going to go through the effort of making meatballs you might as well make a bunch.  I always keep them in the freezer.  They defrost quickly and are great for when you have unexpected guests. You’ll need a meat grinder for this (trust me it’s worth it).  I have one that attaches to a kitchenaid stand mixer and is easy to use.

meatballs platedIngredients:

3 lbs ground beef

1 lb ground veal

1 lb ground pork

3 baseball size balls of white bread soaked in milk (about 20 slices of bread and about 1 cup of milk. Do not use the excess milk)

10-15 cloves of garlic

2 tablespoons of parsley

5 eggs

8 drops Worcestershire sauce (i will measure this for you next time.  I basically count to 8 while it’s dripping out!)

5 squirts of ketchup (good hearty squirts!)

1 Tbsp cutlery teaspoons of salt

1 Tsp espresso spoon of pepper

Other ingredients:

Olive oil for rolling the meatballs and lining bottom of baking sheet pan.

Stock (chicken/vegetable/beef…whatever you have on hand) for bottom of pan if meatballs start sticking during cooking


Preheat oven to 325oF

  1. Run the first 6 ingredients together through meat grinder.
  2. Mix in remaining 5 ingredients. (make sure everything is fully mixed in)

To form meatballs:

  1. Drizzle a little oil in the pans to coat bottom.  Leave a little extra for dipping your fingers
  2. Dip fingers in oil and using your palms roll the mixture into round balls. (the oil will ensure the meat doesn’t stick to your hands).
  3. Line them up in rows on pan leaving a little space between balls.
  4. Bake for about 45-55 mins or until 165oF internal temp. Flip meatballs over about halfway through cooking time.  T

Total cooking time depends on size of meatball. If they are starting to brown too much on the bottom or stick to pan pour a little broth in the bottom of the pan.

Yields: about 50 (2” meatballs)

Meatballs just cooked
Meatballs in Pan

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Bloody Mary

Ingredients:Bloddy w:sauce

1 cup V8 (or jarred tomato juice)

1 1/2 cups Due Cellucci Traditional Sauce

3-5 celery stalks

2 Tbsp Horseradish (or to taste)

2-3 Tsp Worcestershire Sauce

1-1 1/2 Tsp Tabasco (or to taste)

1/2 cup fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp celery seed or celery salt

Salt & Pepper to taste (add this after you blend if needed)

1-2 shots of vodka per glass (or more or less!)


Blend everything together in a blender until smooth, keeping the Vodka aside. Pour over ice and add in vodka.  Stir well and serve with favorite toppings: Celery, bacon, olives, shrimp, pork belly, pickles or any combination. For an extra treat, rim the glasses with a combination of chili, cayenne and salt. Dip each glass into lemon juice and then into your spice mixture.

Serves: 4 (depending on glass size)

Bloody Basic Bloody w:surf&swine

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Zucchini Lasagna Roll Ups

Ingredients:File Mar 01, 5 40 38 PM

10-15  lasagna noodles

1 tsp olive oil

3 cloves garlic, minced

2 medium zucchini, grated and squeezed dry

1 cup  ricotta cheese (can also use marscapone or combination of both)

1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

1 large egg, beaten

1/2 tsp kosher salt

Fresh pepper

1 3/4 cups Due Cellucci Traditional sauce

1/2 cup part skim mozzarella cheese, shredded

Fresh basil for garnish


Preheat the oven to 350°F. Ladle about 1 cup Due Cellucci sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish.

Cook lasagna noodles in salted boiling water for about 4 minutes (just soft enough to roll…they will continue cooking in the oven).  In a medium nonstick skillet, sauté garlic and olive oil over medium heat for about 1 minute; add zucchini, salt and pepper to taste and cook about 4-5 minutes, until soft.

In a medium bowl, combine the zucchini, ricotta cheese, Parmesan cheese, egg, salt and pepper in a medium bowl.

Lay out the lasagna noodles on a clean work surface. Take 1/3 cup of ricotta mixture and spread evenly over the noodle. Roll carefully and place seam side down onto the prepared baking dish. Repeat with remaining noodles.

Ladle the remaining Due Cellucci sauce over the lasagna rolls and top each one with 1 tbsp mozzarella cheese. Put foil over baking dish and bake for about 40 minutes, or until the inside is heated through and the cheese is melted. Top with fresh basil.

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Spaghetti Pie

Whenever my grandmother had  leftover spaghetti she would make us Spaghetti Pie!  It was my favorite thing to eat on long car trips.  It’s so easy to make and now I often make it for my own kids.  It yummy warm or at room temperature making it the perfect on-the-go snack or meal.

Spaghetti Pie
Spaghetti Pie


Leftover spaghetti with sauce
1 egg, lightly beaten
Parmigiano cheese (about a cup)



1. Toss the spaghetti, egg and parmigiano together in a bowl until completely mixed throughout.

2. Heat a skillet pan on med heat and spray with olive oil.  Add the spaghetti mixture to the pan and  spread it out evenly to cover the whole bottom.  Let it brown slowly (reduce the heat a bit if you need to).

3. Flip the pie by sliding it from the pan onto a plate.  Then, place the pan upside down on top of the plate and quickly flip the plate and pan over in one motion (I promise this isn’t that hard!).  Return to heat and continue cooking the other side until browned.

I use a pizza cutter to cut the pie into wedges.  Serve warm or at room temperature.

Spaghetti Pie before the flip
Before the flip


Spaghetti Pie after the flip
After the flip



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Quick Tomato Meat Sauce

Love a good, belly filling tomato meat sauce?  Here’s a quick and easy recipe to get meat sauce on the table in about 20 minutes.


Pasta with Meat Sauce
Pasta with Meat Sauce

1-2 lb ground meat (either beef, pork, veal, turkey or any combination)
1  jar Due Cellucci Tomato Sauce


1. Brown the meat in a pan over med/high heat.

2. In a separate pot, bring the Traditional sauce to a boil and let it simmer over low heat

3. Once the meat is cooked through and no longer pink add it to the traditional sauce and let the sauce simmer together for about 5-10 minutes (the longer it simmers the more flavorful the sauce becomes)

If you want the meat to be more consistent and smooth (vs chunky), you can hit it with an immersion blender.

Toss the sauce with your favorite pasta and voila…meat sauce in less than 1/2 hour.

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Saucy Gazpacho

Saucy Gazpacho
Saucy Gazpacho

You must include the tomatoes, onions and garlic, but you can vary the other vegetables, as you like, depending on what you have in your fridge and what is fresh at the market.  The Due Cellucci Tomato Basil sauce works best to give this chilled soup a full flavor. Garnish with a dollop of Greek yogurt or sour cream and minced scallions or basil for the perfect summer soup.


2 cloves garlic, peeled
1 medium red onion, roughly chopped
4-6 ripe tomatoes (on the vine work well), cored and quartered
2 carrots, cut into 1 inch cubes
2 red or yellow peppers (or one of each), cored, seeded and roughly chopped
2 cucumbers, seeded, peeled and roughly chopped
1 jar of Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce (or more as needed)
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons red wine vinegar
Salt and pepper
2 dashes hot sauce
Garnish:  Greek yogurt, sour cream or crème fraiche, chopped scallions, basil


1. In a food processor fitted with the steel blade or blender, puree the garlic, add the onion and tomatoes and puree until smooth. Place mixture in large bowl.

2. Puree carrots and peppers to desired smoothness and add to bowl with tomatoes, onions and garlic.

3. Puree cucumber to desired smoothness and add to bowl with other vegetables.

4. Add Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce, oil and vinegar.  Season with salt, pepper and hot sauce to taste.

Chill in fridge 4-8 hours or overnight.  (Will keep for 1 week)

Serve cold and garnish with yogurt or sour cream and chopped scallions or basil

Serves 10-12 generous portions.


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Turkey, Bean and Vegetable Chili

This chili is full of veggies and protein.  It’s packed with flavor and has mild, pleasant heat (unless you decide to kick it up a notch!).

Ingredients:Turkey Chili - Plated3

1 pound ground turkey (or chicken or beef)
1 med onion, chopped
2 cloves garlic clove, minced
2 ,medium carrots, diced
2 medium stalks celery, diced
1 yellow pepper, diced
1 orange pepper, diced
1 Tbsp chili powder
1 Tbsp paprika
2 tsp ground cumin
1 tsp dried oregano
1/4 tsp cayenne pepper, optional if you want it spicy
32oz, low sodium chicken broth
2 jars Due Cellucci Traditional sauce
15.5 oz can red kidney beans, rinsed and drained
15.5 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained


  1. Brown turkey in a skillet over medium-high heat breaking up meat with a wooden spoon as it’s not longer pink and cooked through.
  2. Mix in about half of the spice mixture (chili, paprika, cumin, oregano & optional cayenne). Turn off heat and set aside.
  3. Coat a large pot (I like to use my cast iron pot) with cooking spray over medium heat. Cook onion, stirring occasionally, until soft but not browned, about 5 minutes.
  4. Add garlic; cook, stirring for about 1 minute.
  5. Add carrots, celery and peppers; cook, stirring occasionally, until soft about 5 minutes.
  6. Add the remaining spice mixture (chili powder, paprika, cumin, oregano, & optional cayenne).
  7. Add cooked turkey to pot and mix together.
  8. Stir in broth, both types of beans and Traditional sauce; bring to a boil.
  9. Reduce heat to low and simmer, uncovered, stirring about every 5 minutes until the chili thickens to your desired consistency about 35-40 minutes.

Serves 12
Turkey Chili - VeggiesTurkey Chili -MeatTurkey Chili Veggie and meat togetherTurkey Chili - Cooking in pot

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Tomato Basil Soup

Tomato Basil recipeIngredients:

1 Jar Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce
1/2 cup Chicken (or vegetable) broth
1/8 cup Heavy Cream (optional)

Preparation: Simmer Tomato Basil sauce and broth in medium stock pot over medium heat for 3-5 minutes (until hot).  Using a hand-held immersion blender (or conventional blender), purée the mixture until smooth.   If a creamy tomato soup is desired; add heavy cream and simmer 1-2 more minutes.  Makes about three 1cup servings.

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Tomato Basil Shrimp

This light, flavorful dish is a super quick and easy way to make a meal that looks and tastes like you spent hours preparing it! ( took less than 10 mins).  Serve on it’s own or over a long pasta (like fettuccine, cappellini or spaghetti) or rice. Shrimp Tomato Basil

24oz (1 jar) Due Cellucci Tomato Basil Sauce (heated until warm)
2lb large shrimp
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cloves Garlic, chopped
White Wine
Salt & Black Pepper
Red pepper, optional to taste

1. Season both sides of shrimp with salt and pepper.

2. In a large skillet, heat oil over med-high heat. Add garlic and sauté for 1-2 mins until soft but not brown.

3. Add shrimp and cook until no longer translucent, about 2 mins per side. Add a little white wine (about 1/4 cup) to  the pan and let it reduce for a minute or 2 (vodka or vermouth can be substituted for cooking if you don’t have wine open).

4. Add tomato sauce and toss with the shrimp until fully coated (make sure the sauce is warm before you toss it in or the shrimp will get overcooked while the sauce heats up).

5. Serve immediately, you can garnished with fresh basil or parsley leaves to finish.

Serve over rice or pasta.

Serves 4