CLASSIC pasta casarecce (or penne) with a
simple super pork ragu








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Casarecce are one of those not so familiar put absolutely wonderful pasta shapes that invite a wonderful ragu. We have several terrific pork ragus on this site (see pasta sauces) but here is another that is simple to do and spectacular  taste results.

This recipe is adapted from the wonderful and authoritative book by Giuliano Bugialli "Bugialli on Pasta' (see Library), where he has two pork ragus, one from Lucca and one from Emilia-Romangna.

for the sauce:

  • two garlic cloves, peeled and minced
  • one teaspoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • one tablespoon chopped fresh sage leaves
  • one half cup olive oil
  • two tablespoons butter
  • one medium size red onion, peeled and chopped
  • one-half pound ground pork
  • one-quarter pound sweet Italian sausage
  • one half cup white wine
  • one bay leaf
  • one pound of canned imported Italian tomatoes
  • salt and freshly ground pepper

for the pasta:

  • one pound casarecce or penne

If you are using fresh tomatoes, roughly dice them. If using canned tomatoes, use the tomatoes and their juice, and roughly chop them.

Heat the the olive oil and butter in a saute pan. Over medium heat add the garlic, rosemary and sage. One minute later add the onion and saute for about ten minutes.

Remove the skin from the sausages and chop them. Add the sausages and pork to the pan and continue to saute. With a wooden spoon continue working on the pork and sausage, breaking them into smaller pieces, as they are cooked through and starting to brown, about ten minutes. Add the wine and wait a minute as it evaporates, and also add the bay leaf and salt and freshly ground pepper.

Roughly chop the tomatoes and add them to the pan. Use the wooden spoon to break them up as you cook them. Simmer, covered, about twenty minutes, stirring regularly,

In five quarts of boiling hot water, add two tablespoons of salt, and then the pasta. Cook until al dente. Drain fairly well -- a little moisture clinging is a good thing.

Add the pasta to the saute pan.  Stir and mix very well. Cover the saute pan and turn up the heat to high for one minute, to get the pasta steaming. Serve, with some chopped parsley as garnish.



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