This months issue of Food and Wine has a some great pasta recipes in it. One that sparked my interest was Orecchiette with Veal Capers and White Wine. Orecchiette is the pasta that looks like little ears. Unfortunately no store around me has this type of pasta. Further, I am not the biggest fan of capers. I had a bad experience with them once at a wedding reception and it has pretty much ruined them for me. I know that I should try them again, but it was horrible. After a little tweaking I think it is an amazing dish.
Substituting shell pasta for the Orecchiette gives a similar texture that holds on to the meat.
Shells with Veal and White Wine – (adapted from January 2010 issue of Food and Wine)
- 2 tbs extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 medium onion, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove, minced
- 1 pound ground veal
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1/2 cup dry white wine
- 1 1/2 cups chicken stock
- 1 tsp fresh thyme, chopped
- 1/2 tsp fresh rosemary, chopped
- 3/4 – 1 lb medium shell pasta
- 1/2 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 1/4 cup flat leaf parsley, chopped
- 2 tbs unsalted butter
In a large skillet heat the olive oil over medium/high heat. Add the onions and garlic and cook until soft. Roughly 5 minutes. Once the softened add the veal along with some salt and pepper. Cook until the veal is no longer pink in the center. About 8-10 minutes.
Once the meat is cooked, add the white wine and bring to a boil. Continue to boil until the wine is almost evaporated. Then add the chicken stock, thyme and rosemary. Turn the burner to medium/low heat and simmer for about 10 minutes or until the liquid is reduced by half.
While the liquid is reducing, cook the shell pasta in a large pot of salted water until it is al dente. Make sure not to overcook the pasta as it is going to have a little more cooking time. You don’t want it to fall apart.
When the pasta is cooked and the liquid in the sauce is reduced, add the drained pasta along with the Parmigiano-Reggiano, chopped parsley and the butter. Cook over medium/low heat until the sauce is thick and creamy. Roughly 1 to 2 minutes.
Serve warm with a side of bread.
This pasta is hearty and delicious. The shell pasta picks up the sauce and the meat. Just a great combination.