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Pork Ragu

  • Level: Easy
  • Total: 1 hr
  • Prep: 25 min
  • Cook: 35 min
  • Yield: 4 servings
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Ingredients

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 carrot, finely chopped

2 ribs celery from the heart with leafy tops, finely chopped

1 onion, finely chopped

3 to 4 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 bay leaf

Salt and freshly ground black pepper

1/4 cup tomato paste

1 cup dry white wine, or medium bodied red

2 cups chicken stock

3/4 pound to 1 pound cooked shredded pork shoulder

Pinch ground cloves

2/3 cup milk

1 pound pappardelle pasta, cooked to al dente or 1 cup quick cooking polenta, cooked to package directions

A handful finely chopped parsley leaves

Shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano, for topping or for more tang use grated Pecorino Romano

Directions

  1. Heat a Dutch oven or other heavy pot over medium-high heat. Add the extra-virgin olive oil, 3 turns of the pan, then add the carrots, celery, onions and garlic. Stir in the bay leaf and season with salt and pepper, to taste. Cook the vegetables until soft, about 5 to 6 minutes. Add the tomato paste and stir for 1 minute, then add the wine and cook for another minute. Stir in the stock and bring sauce to a simmer. Add the pork and season with a pinch of ground cloves. When the sauce returns to a simmer add the milk and reduce the heat to low. Let the sauce mellow while you bring the water to boil for the pasta or polenta. Sauce may be made ahead and reheated over medium-low heat. Add a splash of stock or water to thin the sauce, if necessary. Serve the sauce tossed with pasta ribbons or atop creamy bowls of polenta and garnish with lots of cheese and parsley.

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