Herbed Pork Penne with white wine cheese sauce

I had some pork chops that needed to be cooked, but I really wanted mac and cheese. So I decided to make an adult mac and cheese style pasta dish with pork and herbs. My family loved it! I hope you will, too. 🙂

Serves 6

Ingredients:

  • 16 oz box penne, cooked to package directions and reserved in pasta pot
  • 1 lb boneless pork loin (I used a 6 pack of boneless chops), cubed
  • 1 cup sweet white wine
  • 1/2 cup reserved pasta water
  • 2 Tbs chopped Rosemary leaves
  • 2 Tbs chopped Sage leaves
  • 6 cloves Garlic, minced
  • 1 1/2 cups milk
  • 2 tsp Salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp Pepper
  • 1/4 cup shredded Mozzerella cheese
  • 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • 1/4 cup Cream cheese
  • 1/8 cup shredded Applewood Smoked Gouda
  • 1/4 to 1/8 cup shredded Sharp Cheddar cheese
  • 1 stick butter, divided
  • 1/4 cup flour

Directions:

Preheat oven to 375°F.

Mix the salt and pepper in a small container. Pour over cubed meat and massage with fingers to coat.

Melt half the butter in a large skillet. Add herbs and garlic. Stir until fragrant.

Add the pork. Arrange in pan so that all the cubes touch the bottom of the pan. Allow to cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Turn pork over and cook another 4 to 5 minutes. Stir until white on all sides and firm. Spoon out pork, leaving as much liquid in pan as possible.

Add rest of butter. When melted, add the flour and whisk smooth. Add wine and pasta water to pan. Whisk until combined. Add the milk and whisk until heated through. Turn off the heat and add the cheese. Stir until melted, and adjust seasoning as needed.

To the pasta pot, add the pork and all the cheese sauce. Stir until well combined. Pour pasta into a large baking dish. Sprinkle more mozzarella and grated parmesan over top. Cover and cook 15 minutes. Remove cover and cook 5 more minutes, until the cheese sauce starts to bubble.

Remove from oven and let sit 5 or 10 minutes, then serve.

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Farmer’s Soup

When I was little, my mother had a subscription to Taste of Home recipe.

One day, she showed me a recipe for a hearty soup which required special oven proof bowls, in which the completed soup was topped with french bread and gouda cheese to broil until it melted right into the soup. She went crazy trying to find a place that sold the things, and after a few weeks we had the soup for the first time. We had to wait for the bowls to cool down and have trivits at our place settings. We’ve long since lost the recipe, and I could not find it to link you to the original.

I must say, though…

We were not the smartest people. It never occurred to any of us that slapping the cheese topped bread on a greased or oiled cookie sheet would yield the same results without running the risk of 3rd degree burns.

Anyway, here is how I make my version of the soup that wont risk injuring your small children or spazzy adults :

Farmer’s Soup

  • 8 Yukon Gold potatoes
  • 8 Carrots
  • 1 Vidalia onion
  • 1 head Cauliflower
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • 3-4 sticks Butter
  • French Bread Loaf
  • Apple wood smoked Gouda Cheese
  • 4 cups water and 2 cubes chicken bullion

Instructions:

Cut potatoes in half lengthwise, and do the same with each half. Cut into thin slices. Do the same with the carrots. Large dice the onions and break up the cauliflower into small pieces.

Melt the butter in the bottom of an 8 quart pot. Toss in the vegetables and coat with butter. Saute for about 8 to 10 minutes. Add the bullion and water. Add a little salt and pepper, about 1/4 each. Bring to a boil and then reduce heat. Simmer 20 minutes, until vegetables are tender. Taste and add salt and pepper if needed.

Slice French Bread into thin rounds and top with slices of Gouda. Place on greased cookie sheet and broil on high heat until cheese melts. Ladle soup into bowls and top with cheesy bread rounds. Let cool two minutes and serve.

And check out Taste of Home. They have some great recipes.