Recipe

Pork and fennel ragu with kumara and goat's cheese gnocchi

Warm, hearty and utterly delicious, this flavour packed pork and fennel ragu is cooked to tender perfection and served atop homemade kumara and goat's cheese gnocchi. It makes the ultimate Winter dinner dish.

  • 25 mins preparation
  • 2 hrs 25 mins cooking
  • Serves 6
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Ingredients

Pork and fennel ragu with kumara and goat's cheese gnocchi
  • 1.6 kilogram piece boneless pork shoulder
  • 2 tablespoon plain (all-purpose) spelt flour
  • 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
  • 2 medium leeks (700g), white part only, sliced
  • 2 trimmed celery stalks (200g), chopped
  • 2 medium fennel bulbs (600g), fronds reserved, sliced thinly
  • 4 clove garlic, chopped
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 1/4 teaspoon dried chilli flakes
  • 2 cup (500ml) chicken stock
  • 1 cup (250ml) water
  • 1 cup (120g) whole marinated green sicilian olives
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 kilogram kumara (orange sweet potato), unpeeled
  • 120 gram soft goat's cheese, crumbled
  • 2 free-range egg yolks
  • 1 cup (150g) plain (all purpose) spelt flour, approximately

Method

Pork and fennel ragu with kumara and goat's cheese gnocchi
  • 1
    Remove rind and trim fat from pork. Cut pork into six pieces, toss in flour; shake away excess. Heat oil in a casserole dish over high heat; cook pork, in batches, for 10 minutes or until browned lightly. Remove from dish.
  • 2
    Cook leek, celery and fennel in same dish, stirring, over medium heat for 8 minutes or until softened. Add garlic, thyme and chilli; cook, stirring, 1 minute or until fragrant. Add stock and water; bring to the boil. Return pork to pan; stir to cover with liquid. Reduce heat to very low; simmer, covered, for 2 hours or until tender, stirring occasionally.
  • 3
    Meanwhile, make gnocchi: Place whole kumara in a medium saucepan; cover with cold water. Cover; bring to the boil. Reduce heat; simmer, partially covered, for 45 minutes or until tender. Drain. Cool slightly; peel.
  • 4
    Mash kumara in a large bowl until smooth. Cool to room temperature. Stir in cheese and egg yolks; season. Add enough of the flour to mix to a soft, slightly sticky dough.
  • 5
    Divide mixture into six portions; roll each portion on a floured surface into a 2cm thick log. Using a floured knife, cut logs into 2cm lengths. Place gnocchi on a large plastic-wrap-lined tray in a single layer. Cover; refrigerate until required.
  • 6
    Remove pork from pan; shred into smaller chunks. Return pork to pan with olives and juice. Season to taste. Cover; keep warm over low heat.
  • 7
    Cook gnocchi, in batches, in a large saucepan of boiling salted water for 2 minutes or until gnocchi float to the surface. Remove gnocchi with a slotted spoon; drain on paper towel.
  • 8
    Serve gnocchi topped with ragu, sprinkled with reserved fennel fronds and extra thyme leaves, if you like.

Notes

Prepare the ragu several hours or a day ahead; refrigerate until cold then skim any fat from the surface before reheating. You can use drained persian fetta instead of goat's cheese.

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