Thursday, November 26, 2009

Fresh Pasta and Saltimbocca

While Thursday will bring a traditional Thanksgiving feast of turkey, stuffing, and mashed potatoes (among other munchies), Wednesday was a night for a simple Italian dinner. My father has been set on making a saltimbocca for a while, which for the uninitiated is veal, chicken, or pork wrapped with prosciutto and fresh sage and then fried. We looked about for some good veal, but decided to go with pork tenderloin instead, which I think was the better choice anyway. Pork rules, man.

For the saltimbocca, my father pounded out slices of the tenderloin to flatten them before wrapping with prosciutto di parma and sage. He dredged each wrap in flour before frying in oil. There's not much more to it at all - this is something super easy that really impresses.

My original plan was to make a batch of saffron risotto to go along with the pork, but everyone vetoed that in favor of a batch of hand-rolled and cut tagliatelle. Not wanting to take too much time with the sauce, I made a basic garlic and sage sauce with oil and butter. I added a teaspoon of flour to thicken it up a bit, along with crushed red pepper, ground black pepper, and sea salt.

For dessert, my stepmother made a beautiful chocolate pecan pie, which we ate along with a 1963 bottle of port that my uncle brought with him for the trip. I'm not a huge port fan, but this was a real treat and complimented the pie perfectly.

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