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Cavatelli with Ground Pork and Rapini in Tomato Sauce

#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio -

Cavatelli with Ground Pork and Rapini in Tomato Sauce
Cavatelli con Carne di Maiale e Rapini al Pomodoro
by James Belardo

Many Italian dishes combine bitter with sweet and savory flavors and this recipe is a good example. Based on a classic simple and delicious pasta dish (see our classic recipe here), we’ve decided to substitute ground pork for the Italian Sausage and add some tomatoes. Cavatelli with Ground Pork and Rapini in Tomato Sauce is a great way to introduce nutritious rapini into your meals. Rapini is preferable but broccoli-rabe or even broccoli will do.

*NOTE: If you find rapini or broccoli-rabe too bitter, we suggest you try to blanch the rapini before tossing it into the sauce. Use a splash of vinegar with a 1/4 tsp of Baking Soda in the boiling water used for blanching.

1.5-2 lbs of ground pork
1 bunch Rapini* – chopped
1 medium onion, diced
2-3 cloves of garlic
1 can (28 oz) plum tomatoes, hand crushed
2-3 tbsp Extra-Virgin Olive Oil
1 cup of white wine (pinot grigio)
1 cup Chicken stock (try our homemade version)
fresh lemon juice (1/2 lemon)
1 tbsp fennel seeds
1 tsp Garlic powder
Salt and pepper to taste
Peperoncino Fiocchi (hot pepper flakes) – optional
Flat-leaf parsley

Pasta (suggested)

Suggested Toppings and Garnish
Ricotta Salata (grated)
A sprig or two of Italian flat-leaf Parsley

Preparing the Ground Pork
1. In a large bowl, combine ground pork, fennel seeds, salt, pepper and a pinch of garlic powder. (You can also add some flat-leaf parsley).
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini in Tomato Sauce#homemade #CucinaDelloZio - fennel , olive oil, garlic, s+p

2. Hand mix and set aside
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini in Tomato Sauce#homemade #CucinaDelloZio - mix w/pork

1. Heat the olive oil in a dutch oven or sauce pan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and onions slowly cook until color starts to soften (be careful not to burn the garlic, it will turn bitter).
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - sauté onions and garlic in olive oil

2. Throw in small rough-meatballs of ground pork, cook until browned stirring occasionally.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - make rough mini meatballs, toss in

3. Add the cup of white wine followed by the chicken stock, cook for about 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - add 1c wine

4. Once is has been simmering for about 5-10 minutes, add the plum tomatoes and let it return to a simmer before adding one or two bay leaves.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - add hand crushed tomatoes #Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - add bay leaves

5. While the sauce simmers add salt and pepper to taste and the basil. This may be a good opportunity to blanch the rapini.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - add basil, s+p

6. Once the sauce it to your liking add the (blanched)rapini* and cover the sauce pan. Cook for 5-10 minutes, stirring occasionally until rapini shrinks. Also, add some lemon juice. Try to keep cover on sauce pan to help the rapini ‘steam.’
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - add the rapini #Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - cover #Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio - mix well and add lemon juice - let cook

7. Cook pasta al dente; when adding the pasta to boiling water (salted)

8. When the pasta is almost ready, take a ladle or two of the pasta water and add to the sauce, this will help the sauce meld into the pasta. Then, add the pasta to the sauce, mixing well.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio -  add a ladle of pasta water #Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio -  let the sauce cook

9. While plating, sprinkle the ricotta salata or pecorino Romano cheese on top with fresh chopped flat-leaf parsley.
#Cavatelli with grnd #Pork + #Rapini Tomato Sauce #homemade #CucinaDelloZio -


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Written by Zio James

January 23, 2017 at 5:23 PM

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