Linguine with Pulled Pork and Arugula

I actually made a recipe from a magazine.   Well, almost.  If I had actually followed the recipe…but I almost followed it.  For all the recipes I read from magazines, I rarely ever actually make anything.

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In the April issue of Bon Appetit, there is a request from a reader for a recipe from the restaurant,  City

House, in Kentucky.  The reader requested the “Fettucine with Pork, Greens, and Beans,” a remix of some classical Southern dishes.

I was intrigued when I first read through it, because we almost always have leftover pork in the freezer and I’m always on the lookout for a new way to reinvent those delicious leftovers.

Well, my mother came to visit yesterday,  and I realized that I had everything to create this.  Even though I did have everything on hand that the Chef’s recipe called for (even some homemade pork stock lurking in my freezer), I did make two changes in an effort to simplify things.  I substituted arugula for kale (I could just add the arugula and let it wilt as opposed to the braising that the kale required), and we omitted the white beans braised in Parmesan. Opening a can of beans is pretty easy, but, what can I say? Everyone was hungry.

Please check the April issue of Bon Appetit for the original recipe.

You will need:

To make the breadcrumbs:

4-6 one-inch pieces french bread, day old or left to dry out in a cooling oven
1 tablespoon orange zest
1 tablespoon lemon zest
1/4-1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
Sprinkle of kosher salt
1 tablespoon olive oil

3-5 cups leftover pulled pork, shredded
2 tablespoons olive oil
Garlic and onion powder, and/or some cajun seasoning, and/or some Adobo seasoning

1 pound fettucine, linguine, or just plain spaghetti

2 tablespoons olive oil

1/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano

red pepper flakes, optional

To make the breadcrumbs, put the bread in a food processor and process until fine.  Add the olive oil to a small saute pan, and add the breadcrumbs.  Using a wooden spoon or rubber spatula, stir over low to medium heat till breadcrumbs are a nice golden toasty color.  Add the zest, pepper flakes, and a sprinkle of salt and combine well.  Set aside.

In a large skillet, add a few tablespoons of olive oil, and heat till oil shimmers.  Add the pulled pork, and saute over medium heat, tossing frequently, till it crisps up a little.  I ended up adding a little bit of homemade pork stock since for some reason it didn’t crisp up, but rather stuck to the pan.  Must not have let it heat up enough.  Taste for seasoning and add some salt, pepper, and any other seasonings.  If your pork is well-seasoned going in, it will not need so much.  I ended up adding salt, pepper, cajun seasoning, garlic powder and onion powder, and then the stock, too.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, al dente preferably.  Reserve a little bit of the pasta water, about 1/2 cup or so, before draining, to add back to the pasta to create the sauce.

When the pasta is done, add the arugula to the pork, and pour the hot pasta on top of the arugula.  This will wilt it, without overcooking it.  Add the cheese  and the 1/2 cup reserved pasta water and toss well.  Serve topped with more cheese and some red pepper flakes.

Enjoy!

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