Garganelli Pasta, with Pork Sausage, Rapini and Parmesan Cheese

by Ian Gresik
Drago Centro

Serves 6 

  • 1 sweet onion, peeled and cut into cubes              
  • 1 large carrot, peeled and cut into chunks
  • 2 stalks celery, sliced
  • 3 cloves garlic        
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil                
  • 1 tablespoon toasted fennel seeds          
  • 2 teaspoons dried oregano                 
  • 1 pound ground pork butt                
  • 2 cups veal stock                           
  • 3/4 pound garganelli pasta (ridged, hollow tube) you can substitute penne as needed
  • 1 bunch rapini, blanched and diced     
  • 1/4 cup finely grated parmesan cheese            
  • 2 tablespoons butter                                   
  • Kosher salt
In a food processor fitted with the metal blade, grind the onion, carrot, celery and garlic into a fine paste. Heat a very large sauté pan (large enough to hold all of the ingredients) over medium heat and add the olive oil.  Swirl and heat until shimmering.  Add the vegetable paste, fennel seeds and oregano and stir to combine.  Sweat for 1 minute.  Add the pork and stir to combine, breaking up any large pieces.  Cook until very tender, about 10 minutes.  Add the veal stock and cook until reduced by half, about 10 more minutes.


While the pork is cooking, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil, add the garganelli and cook 5 minutes, just until starting to soften but not cooked all the way through.  Drain the garganelli and add directly to the pork mixture.  Fold the garganelli in until well combined.  Return to a simmer and dook for five minutes.  Fold in the rapini and heat through, another 2 minutes or so.  Stir in the butter and parmesan cheese.

Serve and enjoy