Monday, February 22, 2010

Braised Pork Roast with Rigatoni

There's nothing like a big pot of red sauce on a chilly winter Sunday. I still have canned tomatoes from my garden last summer and honestly, they make the best sauce ever. It makes me wonder how I survived with store bought tomatoes all these years. It has also made me determined to grow LOTS more tomatoes this year. I plan to fill the front yard with them if necessary.

I've been working most Sundays lately and this week was no exception, but the beauty of working from home is that it gives you freedom to start cooking dinner in the afternoon and then hop back to the "office" to work until dinnertime.

This recipe was inspired from one the Kitchen Genius found in Lydia's Italian-American Kitchen. She used pork spare ribs, but I had a pork roast in the fridge so I used that instead. I also changed up the herbs and really the only thing that stayed the same was the pickled cherry peppers and rigatoni.

I also added meatballs, because my guys can't get enough meat. Plus red sauce just begs for meatballs and I love to have some on hand to slice as a topping for our weekly homemade pizza night (because those guys love meaty pizza too).

I'm sending this recipe to Presto Pasta Nights, hosted this week by Michelle at Italian Mama Chef. This weekly roundup of pasta recipes started by Ruth at Once Upon a Feast is about to celebrate it's third anniversary, but I just found out about it from Reeni at Cinnamon Spice & Everything Nice.

Wow, that's alot of links! But go check them out anyways. And then join the fun and get your own pasta on.

Braised Pork Roast with Rigatoni
serves 6

3 - 5 pound boneless pork roast
salt and pepper
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
6 cloves garlic, smashed and minced
2 quarts whole tomatoes in juice
8 pickled cherry peppers, stemmed, seeded and quartered
2 bay leaves
1 teaspoon basil
1 teaspoon oregano
1 teaspoon thyme
1 pinch of red pepper flakes
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon pepper

Slice pork roast into one inch slices, season with salt and pepper. Heat olive oil in large dutch oven and add as many of the pork slices as will fit without touching each other. Sear pork slices on both sides (about 3 minutes a side on medium heat).

Remove pork and leave resting on a plate. Add onions and garlic to pan drippings and cook until tender, about four minutes. Add remaining ingredients and stir thoroughly. Tuck pork slices into sauce and simmer on low heat covered for 2 hours. Uncover and continue to simmer for an additional hour. If desired, meatballs can be added at this point.

Serve over one pound of cooked rigatoni and garnish with fresh grated Romano or Parmesan cheese.


Ruth Daniels said...

Great post and I'm glad you found Presto Pasta Nights, so that I could find you!

Thanks for sharing a terrific looking ragu...we're a meat loving pasta family too!

What's up next?

Reeni said...

Your big pot of sauce sounds crazy good with pork and meatballs! What a sublime comfort meal. Thanks for the shout-out!

Alicia Foodycat said...

That looks wonderful!

I'm trying your baked oatmeal this weekend too.

Lo said...

Ah -- the beauty of slowly simmered meat and tomato sauce. This looks positively delicious... though it makes me long for those summer tomatoes! (We had a terrible season last year, so I didn't have any left to put up! Hoping for a better year this year.)

The Food Hunter said...

I love my sunday sauce with pork!

Deb in Hawaii said...

OK, this just makes me drool--what a gorgeous meat lovers delight! ;-)

The Diva on a Diet said...

Oh how I wish I was having this for dinner tonight. I really love the addition of the cherry pepper and you can't beat the pork/red sauce combo. I always use some country pork ribs when making homemade sauce. I love when the meat has simmered so long it just falls apart.

This looks spectacular!