Tag Archives: pappardelle

Pappardelle with braised pork belly

A slight variation on my usual pork belly in red wine, this just takes a few hours on the stove. I finished the sauce with a few nobs of butter to give it a silky texture that coats the pappardelle.

Ingredients for two

  1. 200g pork belly
  2. 1 onion, finely diced
  3. 1 small carrot, finely diced
  4. 2 stalks celery, finely diced
  5. 1 tomato, roughly diced
  6. 2 glasses red wine
  7. 2 cups chicken stock
  8. fresh thyme
  9. 1 bay leaf
  10. couple of nobs butter
  11. Pappardelle pasta

Method

  1. Brown all edges of the pork belly in a hot pan. You want to get the natural sugars in the meat caramelising. Remove from pan and set aside
  2. In the same pan, add some oil and gently sweat the onions, carrots and celery until they are tender
  3. Add the pork belly back into the pan along with the wine, tomato, herbs and enough chicken stock to just cover the meat
  4. Bring to a boil, cover and reduce the temperature to a simmer. Let lightly bubble away for 2 hours. The liquid will reduce a bit so you may need to check now and then that the pork is still covered. I started to shred the pork after about an hour so that every bit of the pork gets to release its flavour, and also  take on the flavours in the pan. Season to taste
  5. After a couple of hours the liquid in the pan should have reduced by about a half and the pork tender enough to shred into meaty chunks.
  6. Cook pappardelle until just cooked in salted water. Reserve some of the cooking water before you drain the pasta – that starchy salty water helps to make the sauce loose and helps the pasta from sticking
  7. While the pasta is cooking, add a few nobs of cold butter to the sauce. It really gives another dimension to the sauce, making it silky and helping to coat the pasta
  8. Pop the pasta into the pan with the sauce, adding a few tablespoons of the cooking water to help the sauce really coat each ribbon of pasta
  9. Serve hot with a good handful of freshly grated parmesan

Pappardelle with braised pork belly in red wine

I spoke to my friend about this last night and wanted to remember this as one of my all-time favourite dishes to serve to friends at dinner.  It’s impressively delicious, and really easy to make – the slow cooker really does it all for you.

This dish was inspired by Oso’s wild boar braised in red wine.  Not having easy access to wild boar, I decided to try it with the more readily-available pork belly.

Brown the pork belly strips (I use one strip per person) in a frying pan until brown and crispy, about 3 minutes each side.

Pop the browned pork belly strips into your slow cooker along with a few cloves of garlic, some thyme and about a bottle of red wine (for four).  It will reduce down, so don’t worry that there seems to be a lot of wine in the cooker.  I put the slow cooker on high for an hour or two and then reduce it to low for the next 6 hours, but guess you could even pop it all in the cooker in the morning and leave it on slow for the day to have a wonderful pasta sauce by dinnertime.

While the pasta is cooking, take out any large pieces of the pork belly, shred into large chunks and then add back into the sauce.  Season to taste.

When you’re ready to eat, cook your pappardelle in salted water (the flavour of the water should be how salty you want your pasta to be) to just before al dente, then drain and transfer to a large frying pan with a few spoons of the cooking water (just so that the sauce can coat the pasta and make it silky) and add the sauce.

Serve with freshly grated parmesan and a few drops of good olive oil.