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Pork Braciole with Tagliatelle and Tomato Sauce

Pork Braciole with Tagliatelle and Tomato Sauce
A Southern Italian specialty, braciole can refer to any cut of meat pounded thin and stuffed with savory ingredients, then rolled and braised to tender perfection. Nearly every local cook has a signature family recipe, with many versions featuring boneless pork loin or shoulder (braciole di maiale). Immigrants brought the dish to the United States, where it plays a starring role in holiday celebrations, Sunday dinners and other festive occasions.

Ingredients:

  • 3 Tbs. extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 bunch Swiss chard, cut into 2-inch strips
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 Tbs. roasted garlic puree
  • 3/4 cup grated provolone cheese
  • 3/4 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
  • 1 cup dried bread crumbs
  • 2 oz. prosciutto, cut into 1/4-inch strips
  • 1 egg, lightly beaten
  • 3 lb. boneless pork shoulder, butterflied and
      pounded to 1/2-inch thickness
  • 1/2 cup white wine
  • 1 cup chicken stock
  • 1 can (28 oz.) whole tomatoes, crushed and
      juices reserved
  • 5 fresh thyme sprigs
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 1 lb. tagliatelle

Directions:

In a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm 1 Tbs. of the olive oil until almost smoking. Add the chard and season with salt and pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, until wilted, about 2 minutes. Stir in 1 Tbs. of the garlic puree. Transfer the chard to a fine-mesh sieve set over a bowl and squeeze out the excess water. Let the chard cool to room temperature.

In a bowl, stir together the chard, provolone and Parmigiano-Reggiano cheeses, bread crumbs and prosciutto, then stir in the egg.

Lay the pork out on a work surface and season with salt and pepper. Spread the chard mixture across the surface of the meat, pressing down lightly and leaving a 1-inch border. Starting from a short end, tightly roll up the pork. Using kitchen twine, tie the rolled pork crosswise at 2-inch intervals.

In a stovetop-safe slow-cooker pot or large sauté pan over medium-high heat, warm the remaining 2 Tbs. oil. Add the pork and brown on all sides, about 2 minutes per side. Transfer to a plate.

Add the wine to the pot and cook, stirring to scrape up the browned bits, about 1 minute. Set the slow-cooker pot on the base. If you used a sauté pan, pour the wine into a slow cooker. Add the stock, the tomatoes with their juices, the remaining 1 Tbs. garlic puree, the thyme and bay leaves to the slow cooker and stir to combine. Place the pork on top. Cover and cook on high for 7 hours. Transfer the pork to a carving board and cover loosely with aluminum foil.

Set the slow-cooker pot over medium-high heat, or transfer the sauce to a large fry pan and set over medium-high heat. Simmer until the sauce is thickened, about 30 minutes. Skim the fat off the sauce. Remove the bay leaves and discard.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of water to a boil over high heat. Generously salt the boiling water, add the pasta and cook according to the package instructions until al dente (tender but firm to the bite). Drain the pasta and transfer to a large bowl.

Cut the pork into 3/4-inch slices. Add the sauce to the pasta and toss to combine. Transfer to a large serving bowl or platter and arrange the pork slices on top. Serve immediately. Serves 8.
Williams-Sonoma Kitchen.