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December 06, 2008

Recipe: Winter Market Pasta

Imarket_shopper1 While working on the Bite Club TV episode about Winter Farmers' Market (see photo), I couldn't resist actually buying a bunch of the great products the vendors had on display. I made this when I got home that evening.  For all you localvores, I'm guessing this includes 98% Vermont ingredients — I've listed the vendors from whom I purchased my supplies. By the way, my recipes are vague because I'm not big on measuring, sorry!

Fresh Pasta with Pork and 'Kraut

2 T. butter (Lakes End Cheeses)
2 shallots, diced (Lots of folks have 'em)
1 pound ground pork (Maple Wind Farm)
Salt and pepper
1 c. sauerkraut (Arethusa)
1/2 pound fresh pasta (Savage Garden)
Ground nutmeg

Put a large pot of water up to boil. Heat oil over medium heat. When hot, add the shallots and sweat, stirring. When they are translucent and softened, add the pork. Season with salt and pepper and cook until no pink remains. Taste for seasoning and adjust. Remove from heat and set aside, reserving about a third of the pork for another use (it's great atop an omelette). Add the 'kraut to the pan and mix.

Put lots of salt in the pasta water: It should taste like sea-water when properly salted. Add the pasta, stir to separate the strands, return to a boil, and cook for about 3 minutes, or until the pasta rises to the top of the pot.

Drain and combine with the pork. Add additional salt and pepper to taste. You may need more salt than you think, but when you've added the right amount, each component will taste really flavorful without tasting "salty." Then, little by little, add nutmeg to taste. The flavor should be present in each bite, but not overpowering.

Time to eat!

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