Love For Napa

It was Throwback Thursday! This group requested one of my favorite menus: "Napa Valley".  If you have been reading the blog for a while, this menu features a Bruschetta Bar with Herbed Goat Cheese, Tomato-Basil, Sage Cream Corn, and Sautéed Mushrooms.  The entree is a Tuscan Pork Ragu served with a Chopped Kale Salad with Pancetta Vinaigrette.  For dessert?  A Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding...

We started with wine -- as all good things do.  I prepared the Bruschetta slices, Sage Cream Corn, and Sautéed Mushrooms.  I love the smell in the kitchen when I prepare this appetizer.

Next, we started the Tuscan Pork Ragu.  The longer this dish simmers -- the more tender the pork will be.  This recipe was inspired by my travels to Italy.  I took a traditional Bolognese sauce and put my twist on it.

After I got a head start on the Tuscan Pork Ragu, it was time to think about dessert.  You guys. This recipe is so delicious and comes together so simply.  Nothing fancy in here -- croissants, Ghirardelli chocolate chips, eggs, sugar...you know the drill.

For the salad, I made a Warm Pancetta Vinaigrette over the stove. The warm vinaigrette helps soften the kale and bring out a rich green color.

My favorite pasta to pair with the Tuscan Pork Ragu is an egg pappardelle.  When you are serving pasta, keep in mind the proportions of the meat to the pasta noodle.  Because, I used smaller chunks of the pork, I paired it with a heartier noodle.  The flavor is so delicious.

This Chocolate Croissant Bread Pudding is D.I.V.I.N.E. fresh from the oven.  Oh my.

Thank you for such a fabulous class!  It was a pleasure having you in my kitchen.  

Cheers! XOXO Paula