a fresh take on a classic tuscan dish
It takes time to make this authentic Tuscan dish of wild boar in a rich red wine sauce, but the unbelievably delicious flavours are definitely worth the wait. Make it a celebration with fresh pasta, reggiano parmesan, good company and plenty of wine.
500gwild boar (or organic pork) shoulder or leg, cut into 2cm pieces
750mlbtl red wine
2garlic cloves, bruised
1tbs whole black peppercorns
1tbs juniper berries
1/2cup (125ml) extra virgin olive oil
1medium red onion, finely chopped
2celery sticks, finely chopped
2carrots, peeled, finely chopped
5garlic cloves, extra, crushed
2tbs sun-dried tomato concentrate or ½ cup (140g) good-quality tomato paste
2x400g cans cherry tomatoes
2tbs thyme leaves
1tbs juniper berries, extra, crushed
2cups (500ml) chicken or vegetable stock
Cooked fresh pappardelle pasta, to serve
Finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, to serve
Green salad, to serve
Wood-fired pane di casa, to serve
Place the boar or pork in a large bowl and add enough of the wine to cover. Add garlic cloves, thyme sprigs, peppercorns, whole juniper berries, 1 rosemary sprig and 1 bay leaf. Cover and place in the fridge overnight to marinate.
Drain the boar or port from the marinade. Pat dry with paper towel. Strain the marinade through a fine sieve into a jug and reserve. Discard solids.
Heat the oil in a large heavy-based saucepan. Cook the boar or pork for 2-3 mins each side or until browned all over.
Add the onion, carrot and celery to the pan and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5-6 mins or until the vegetables start to caramelise slightly. Add the crushed garlic and sun-dried tomato concentrate or tomato paste and cook, stirring, for 1-2 mins.
Add the reserved marinade and cook, stirring with a wooden spoon and scraping the bottom of the pan to dislodge any bits that have cooked onto the base, until the wine is reduced and all the alcohol has evaporated. Add the tomatoes and cook until the mixture thickens slightly.
Add remaining wine, thyme leaves, crushed juniper berries, remaining rosemary, remaining bay leaves and enough stock to just cover the meat. Cover and cook for 2 hours or until the meat is very tender and the sauce thickens. Season.
Stir in pasta. Serve with parmesan, salad and bread.