This is the very first recipe that was birthed out of my recipe hunter project. Because I haven’t developed the show yet, I thought I would design an episode for Season 2 of Extra Virgin. The idea is to reconnect people to their family history through their families’ traditional dishes.
In this episode, we invited old friend and star of Criminal Minds, Joe Mantenga. We hunted down this recipe, Orecchiette al Ragu di Braciole, which was the first dish that his family in Italy made for him in the 1970’s when he visited them for the first time. Deb and I spent about 2 weeks over the phone and on Skype with his family in Italy learning and perfecting the recipe. All I can say is that when Joe tasted it, he cried.