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Pasta with Pork Ribs, Tomato, and Miso Mushroom Butter Sauce

Renée Robinson

Sunday Pasta Sauce is a Tradition for a Very Good Reason.

This recipe is 100% pure comfort food for me. On average, I get in the mood for a slow cooked tomato based pasta sauce every couple of months. Probably more often than that, now that I think about it. And I make different variations – meatballs, sausage, etc. 

I enjoy everything about the whole process. The browning of the meat, the slow simmer of the sauce which causes the aroma to drift throughout my whole house. No rushing. Letting the food take its time to arrive at that perfect sweet spot. And yeah, I almost always make it on a Sunday. The day where I bring the week to a close and regroup for what comes next. The day when I most need comfort. This isn’t the day I take on complex cooking. It’s a slow and steady type of cooking day.

My favorite rendition of this sauce is made with pork ribs. I love tomato sauces with pork. There’s something about the flavor of pork, slow cooked in crushed tomatoes, that brings out the very best in a tomato sauce. I don’t think it needs much else. No onions or other vegetables. Only garlic and fresh basil are necessary to finish off the sauce and I’ve made it that way many many times. 

But I happened to have some of my Miso Mushroom Butter in the freezer and couldn’t imagine that it would not be delicious added to the sauce. The butter contains cooked mushrooms and onions, miso, gochujang, and butter. How could this not be good in the tomato sauce? 

Miso Mushroom Butter Prepared

I waited until the very end before whisking in about 2/3 cup of the softened Miso Mushroom Butter. Of course, the sauce instantly changed. It took on a very silky quality of texture and the flavor mellowed, became richer and more nuanced.

I normally sprinkle a lot of pecorino on the finished dish, but this time around it didn’t need nearly as much. The Miso Mushroom Butter gave it some of the saltiness and depth of flavor normally provided by the cheese. I still added the cheese, but in a lesser quantity. Chile flakes were the finishing touch. 

Yep, this was just what I had in mind for my Sunday dinner. While we’re not religious people, we do have traditions. One of these traditions is that we watch British TV on Sunday nights. This started years ago and it’s become almost sacred. There’s something so reassuring about British TV shows. Perfect for Sunday nights. The segue from a simple comforting meal to feet up in front of the “telly” is how we do Sunday nights. It’s the best. 

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Pasta with Pork Ribs, Tomato, and Miso Mushroom Butter Sauce

Recipe by Renée Robinson
Servings

6

servings

Browned pork ribs are simmered slowly with tomatoes and garlic until meltingly tender. Miso mushroom butter is whisked in at the end, fresh basil is added, and the finished bowl of pasta is topped with pecorino. Comfort food at its best.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons 2 extra virgin olive oil

  • 2 1/2 pounds 2 1/2 country style or St. Louis style pork ribs, cut into individual ribs

  • Morton Kosher salt

  • 6 large 6 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced in half

  • 28 ounce 28 can, plus 15 ounce can whole tomatoes, preferably San Marzano

  • 2/3 cup 2/3 Miso Mushroom Butter, room temperature

  • 10-15 10-15 fresh basil leaves, large ones torn in half and a few for garnishing

  • 1 pound 1 pappardelle pasta or pasta shape of your choice

  • Red chile powder or flakes of your choice, such as gochugaru, Aleppo, etc.

  • Freshly grated pecorino cheese

Directions

  • Heat a large Dutch oven over medium heat. When hot add the olive oil. Sprinkle half the ribs with salt and add them to the pot. Brown well on all sides. Remove from the pot and repeat with the second half of the ribs, adjusting the heat as necessary to keep them from burning. Push the ribs to the edges of the pot and add the garlic to the center of it, stirring for a couple of minutes until the cloves start taking on some color. Add the first batch of ribs back into the pot. Using your hands, crush the canned tomatoes and add them, along with all their juices to the ribs. Stir in 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt and bring to a simmer. Cover the pot, reduce the heat to low and cook, stirring occasionally, until the ribs are falling apart and tender. Depending on the type of ribs used, this can take anywhere from 1 hour to 2 1/2 hours. For the country style ribs I used here, it took about 2 1/2 hours.
  • Remove the ribs from the pot. Cook the sauce until reduced to the consistency you’d like. I cooked mine for about 10-15 minutes. Whisk in the Miso Mushroom Butter and taste for seasoning, adding salt and pepper if necessary. Put the ribs back into the pot and reheat in the sauce. At the last minute, stir in the basil leaves.
  • In the meantime, cook the pasta in a large pot of salted water until al dente. Drain and place on a large platter or individual pasta bowls. Place a couple pieces of the ribs on top of the pasta and spoon on some of the sauce. Sprinkle with the pecorino and chile flakes. Garnish with a few basil leaves and Enjoy!

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