This recipe was illustrated on one of Williams Sonoma’s recent flyers and I was instantly smitten. Rich sauce caressing succulent pappardelle noodles topped with an unctuous burrata cheese. Gimme. Now!
Off to the butcher to procure pork shoulder. The rest of the ingredients were to hand, with the exception of the burrata, which proved surprisingly difficult to track down. I briefly considered forgoing its obvious delights, but persistence won out and we were able to obtain it at the third place we visited. Was it ever worth it! It adds a creamy counterpoint to the rich tanginess of the tomato sauce.
- 2 1/2 lb boneless pork shoulder, cut into 1-inch cubes
- 2 tsp dried rosemary, crushed
- Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
- 6 tbsp olive oil, plus more for drizzling
- 2 small yellow onion, diced
- 2 carrots, peeled and diced
- 1 tbsp minced garlic
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 2 cans (28 oz) plum tomatoes, crushed
- 1 cup chicken stock plus more as needed
- 2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
- 2 fresh rosemary sprigs
- 2 fresh thyme sprigs
- 24 oz pappardelle, fresh or dried
- 2 balls burrata cheese (each about 10 oz)
- In a large bowl, toss the pork with the dried rosemary and season with salt and pepper.
- In a large fry pan or Dutch oven over medium-high heat, warm the 6 tbsp olive oil. Working in batches, sear the pork until browned on all sides, about 8 minutes per batch. Transfer the pork to a platter and set aside.
- Add the onion, carrot and garlic to the pan and sauté until softened (3 to 5 minutes). Season with salt and pepper. Add the wine and chicken stock and deglaze the pan. Add the crushed tomatoes and bring to a brisk simmer. Return the pork to the pot and stir to combine. Add more chicken stock if necessary so that the pork is mostly submerged in liquid. Reduce the heat to medium and cook, uncovered, until the liquid has reduced slightly and the pork is just starting to turn tender (20 to 25 minutes). Stir in the balsamic vinegar, fresh rosemary and fresh thyme. Lower the heat to medium-low, cover the pan and cook, stirring occasionally and adding more broth if necessary to keep the pork mostly covered, for about an hour; the pork should be very tender.
- Discard the thyme and rosemary sprigs. Continue cooking, uncovered, over medium-low heat for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, bring a large pot two-thirds full of water to a boil over high heat. Add the pappardelle and cook until al dente, 2 to 3 minutes, or according to the package directions. Drain the pasta and add to the ragù. Stir to coat the pasta with the sauce.
- To serve, tear the burrata into eight pieces and arrange on top of the pasta. Drizzle lightly with olive oil and serve immediately.
- When cutting the pork into the 1″ cubes, remove any large chunks of fat. Marbling and veining is fine, but discard obvious fatty pieces.
- I prefer to use canned whole tomatoes and crush them with a food mill. That way any seeds and stringy fibres are removed and the tomato sauce is silky, without the bitter taste the seeds sometimes give.
- I omitted the basil garnish from the original recipe as the rosemary and thyme provided more than enough herbal flavour and fragrance.
- The original recipe was for half this quantity, but it seemed an awful shame to go to all this trouble for 4 servings. I frozen half of it. It’s a great feeling knowing that it’s there in the freezer, awaiting a cold night.
- Prep Time: 30
- Cook Time: 90
- Serving Size: 8