Chef's Recipes

Chicken and clove ragù with polenta pasta

A wonderfully aromatic dish that shows just what white ragù is capable of.

By Ricardo Momesso
  • 50 mins preparation
  • 2 hrs 20 mins cooking plus cooling, chilling
  • Serves 6 - 8
  • Print
"I can't get Valentino's clove-scented chicken ragù out of my mind. Would the chef share the recipe?" - Christopher Dranias, Brunswick, Vic
To request a recipe, email or send us a message via Facebook. Please include the restaurant's name and address, as well as your name and address. Please note that because of the volume of requests we receive, we can only publish a selection in the magazine.


  • 1 bunch cavolo nero, trimmed, ribs remove (about 350gm)
  • 60 ml olive oil (¼ cup)
  • 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 3 anchovy fillets
  • 40 gm finely grated pecorino, plus extra to serve (½ cup)
Polenta pasta
  • 100 gm polenta
  • 500 gm plain flour (3 cups)
Chicken ragù
  • 60 ml olive oil (¼ cup)
  • 3 golden shallots, finely diced
  • 1 garlic clove, finely chopped
  • 1 kg coarsely minced chicken
  • 1 litre dry white wine
  • 4 cloves, cracked


  • 1
    For polenta pasta, bring 350ml of salted water to the boil in a saucepan over medium-high heat, then add polenta in a thin, steady stream while whisking continuously until all is incorporated. Reduce heat to low and stir occasionally until polenta is cooked and thick (35-45 minutes; you may need to add extra water). Spread thinly on an oiled tray, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate to chill. Transfer polenta to a kitchen mixer fitted with a paddle and beat until smooth. Add flour and mix until a soft dough forms. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth (8-10 minutes), adding extra flour if too sticky. Wrap in plastic wrap and set aside to rest (30 minutes).
  • 2
    For chicken and clove ragù, heat oil in a saucepan over medium heat. Add shallot and garlic and sauté until tender (8-10 minutes). Add chicken and fry until juices reduce and chicken begins to brown (35-40 minutes). Add wine and cloves, and simmer until liquid is almost evaporated (30-40 minutes). Add 1 litre water and reduce by half (30 40 minutes). Season to taste and set aside.
  • 3
    Meanwhile, divide pasta into quarters and roll each out on a lightly floured surface to about 2mm thick. Cut into triangles of about 3cm and transfer to flour-dusted trays.
  • 4
    Cook cavolo nero in a saucepan of boiling salted water until tender (2-3 minutes). Drain, refresh and set aside. Heat oil in a large frying pan, over medium-high heat, add garlic and anchovies and cook until starting to colour (2-3 minutes). Add cavolo nero, season to taste and cook until starting to colour (2-3 minutes). Transfer to chicken ragù and stir to combine.
  • 5
    Cook pasta in a large saucepan of simmering salted water until al dente (1-2 minutes). Drain, toss with ragù, sprinkle with pecorino and serve hot with extra pecorino.


Note At Valentino chef Riccardo Momesso likes to use whatever greens are in season.