One of those "Sunday Sauce" sort of recipes that simmers all day and fills your home with the most amazing smells. Add some french bread, or just a large salad and you are set with a filling meal for one (with leftovers, obviously) or eight.
pastacooked to directions - pappardelle, spagetti, farfalle or gnocchi are best
Heat the large heavy bottom pot over medium heat. Add the butter and olive oil and heat until butter is melted. Add onion, carrot, celery, garlic and a hearty pinch of salt. Sauté for 10 minutes, stirring often. Add the diced pancetta and cook for 10 minutes, until pancetta is golden.
Increase the heat to high. Add half of the ground beef to the pan. Break apart the meat with your spatula/spoon mixing it in with the vegetable mixture. Cook until no pink remains in the meat. Add in other half of the ground beef, breaking apart and mixing into the cooked meat/vegetable mixture and cook until no pink remains. Repeat a final time with the ground pork.
Once all meat is cooked through, set a time for 20 minutes. Stir mixture every 3-4 minutes to make sure it doesn't burn. Reduce heat to medium low- 8-10 minutes into this process. You want the meat to caramelize and develop some crispy bits.
Increase heat to medium and add white wine to the pan. Using a hearty spatula/spoon, immediately start scraping all the crispy brown bits off the bottom of the pot. The wine should be nearly evaporated when you finish this process.
Add diced tomatoes (and their liquid), tomato sauce milk, beef stock, another hearty pinch of salt and pepper. Increase heat to medium-high and bring pot to a boil. Once boiling, reduce to low and allow the sauce to simmer for 4 hours. Place lid on the pot to half-cover the pot.
Stir the sauce every hour or so. The sauce should be the consistency of porridge when it is done cooking. If it starts sticking/burning be sure the pot is on the lowest heat and add a bit more stock to thin it out.
Taste and adjust salt and pepper.
--SERVE -- Top with a 1/2 tbsp knob of butter and a generous helping of freshly grated parmesan.-- PREP AHEAD -- This is a PERFECT recipe to make ahead. Just reheat the sauce before guests arrive over low heat. Cook pasta/gnocchi. Top with sauce, butter, and parmesan. -- FREEZE -- This freezes beautifully. I suggest freezing it in individual servings (Hello, FoodSaver), but you do what works best for you and yours.