This hearty pasta is definitely a meal to cozy up with on a cold winter night 🤗. It has a vibe of comfort food but also fresh tang from some green apple 🍏, white wine, and vinegar. Andrew LOVES this dish, but for some reason it fell out of my cooking rotation. When I was #Boroughmarket recently, I saw fresh pappardelle and was reminded of it. I decided it was a great one to share, especially since it’s winter. It’s easy enough to make for a weeknight dinner and special enough for company. It has a fairly long list of ingredients, but don’t be intimidated. The preparation is pretty straightforward and simple.
Here’s what you’ll need for the sauce:
You’re going to generously season the pork shoulder with salt and pepper.
When the pork is ready, you’ll easily be able to break it apart with a fork.
You should actually remove the pork, shred it and then add it back into the sauce.
Finished and ready to go!
- 3 pounds boneless pork shoulder
- 1 tablespoon + a little bit more if needed of a neutral oil such as canola or sunflower
- 2 medium onions, medium diced
- 2 stalks celery, medium diced
- 2 small or 1 large Granny Smith apple, peeled, cored, and medium diced
- 2 medium carrots, peeled and medium diced
- 3 cloves garlic, minced or pressed through a press
- 1 ½ cups dry white wine such as Sauvignon Blanc
- ½ cup white wine vinegar
- ½ cup (140g) tomato paste
- 2 cans (800g) canned whole plum tomatoes
- 3 tablespoons honey6-8 sprigs of fresh thyme, tied together with butchers string if you have it
- 1 teaspoon salt
- Freshly ground black pepper
- 2 pounds pappardelle pasta (ideally fresh pasta)
- A few handfuls of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
- Parmesan cheese, grated
- Ricotta cheese
- Preheat the oven.
- Sear the pork shoulder.
- Sauté the veggies, apple, and garlic.
- Add the tomato paste, wine, vinegar, tomatoes, honey, and thyme.
- Add the pork back to the pot, bring to a boil, cover, and place in the oven for 3-4 hours.
- Remove the pot from the oven, then remove the pork from the pot and shred.
- Add the shredded pork back to the pot.
- Cook the pasta.
- Serve! (with chopped parsley and some Parmesan and ricotta cheeses on the side)
- Preheat oven to 150C/300 F
- Generously season the pork shoulder with salt and pepper. (Here in the UK, the “fat cap” as it’s called is removed and then tied back on to the pork shoulder with butchers string. Some sources will tell you that you should leave this on when you cook it because it gives flavor to the meat. The idea of all of that fat dripping into my sauce is rather unappealing to me, so I remove it. I’d say do whatever you’re comfortable with. I think this sauce has great flavor without this extra fat, but if you want to keep it on, by all means, go for it!) Put oil in a heavy bottomed (preferably cast iron) pot and place on a burner turned to high. Allow the oil to heat up for about 2 minutes and then place the pork shoulder into the pot. Sear for 3-4 minutes on all sides. If you find that the pork is burning/blackening as opposed to browning, turn the heat down. Remove the pork and place it in a bowl or plate while you cook the veggies.
- If your pan is very dry, you can add a bit of oil before you sauté the veggies. Add the onion, celery, carrot, and apple to the pot and sauté over medium-low heat until the veggies are soft, about 10 minutes. Add in the garlic and sauté for another minute or 2.
- Add the tomato paste and continue to cook for another 2 minutes, stirring often. Add in the wine, white wine vinegar, tomatoes, honey, and thyme and give everything a good stir to combine.
- Turn the heat to high and add the pork and any juices to the pot. As soon as the sauce comes to a boil, cover and place in the oven. The pork will need to cook for about 3-4 hours and you should turn it at the halfway mark.
- You’ll know the pork is cooked to perfection when you can easily pull it apart with 2 forks. Carefully remove the pot from the oven and then carefully remove the pork from the sauce and place it on a cutting board. Allow it to cool for a few minutes so it will be easier (and less dangerous) to shred. With 2 forks, pull the meat apart, discarding any large pieces of fat. Remove the thyme. (If you didn’t have twine to tie the thyme together, it’s OK. You’ll just find the stems in the sauce.)
- Add the shredded pork back into the sauce.
- Cook the pasta according to the package instructions.
- Place some of the sauce at the bottom of a very large serving bowl. Add some of the pasta on top and continue to layer sauce/pasta and then finish with some sauce on top. Add the chopped parsley. Serve with Parmesan cheese. And I like to serve it with ricotta on the side as well.