Cook the Book: Albaretto della Torre

I wanted a meaty dish for my Rosemary bread.

My inspiration: Fare la scarpetta. It’s an Italian saying that encourages diners to mop up every last morsel of their meal by using bread like a “little shoe.”

Sugo 'd' Arrosto

That led me back to Jeffery Steingarten’s book: “The Man Who Ate Everything.” I found a pasta dish from Albaretto della Torre that would let me mop up meat sauce with bread.

Sugo d’Arrosto was easy to make. It also called for Steingarten’s Piemontese meat broth. That needed more time in the kitchen. His fondo bruno needed at least four hours to simmer on the stove.

I made a mess in the kitchen. Flour, olive oil, salt and a dough-covered bowl covered one counter. I needed more space to chop onions and tomatoes for the fondo bruno. Thankfully, my hubby helped me clean up after dinner.


Mark requested roasted Brussels sprouts. I used Ina Garten’s recipe. I scaled back the salt since I used pre-seasoned sprouts from Trader Joe’s. The crunchy side paired nicely with the pasta.

I seared beef cubes from the fondo bruno and added them to the sugo. The pasta sauce satisfied my craving for carbs covered in butter and meat flavors.

After the pasta, we lingered over red wine and bread dipping.

It’s delightful to end the meal with such a yummy “little shoe”!

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