Bocconcini di cinghiale con polenta di farro

Wild Boar Stew with Farro Polenta

For a long time, I was curious about farro cultivation and processing, so on a visit to the Abruzzo, I was delighted to have the opportunity to meet Amadeo Fiore, who owns a farro company, Gioie di Fattoria, in Torano Nuovo. Along with whole-grain farro, he produces a quick-cooking ground farro for polenta, called puls, and a coarsely ground farro called farricello, which resembles cracked wheat. He served a delicious wild boar stew spooned over farro polenta. If you cannot find ground farro at the market, you can serve the stew with cornmeal polenta or polenta di taragna, or you can try grinding whole-grain farro in a spice mill or blender and then cook it as you would polenta. And if you cannot find wild boar, use pork shoulder.

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Ingredients

  • 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more for browning
  • 1 yellow onion, chopped
  • 3 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 2 celery stalks, chopped
  • 2 pounds boneless wild or farm-raised boar, cut into -inch pieces
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 cups dry red wine
  • 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard
  • About 2 cups meat stock

Method

In a Dutch oven, heat the 2 tablespoons olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion, carrots, and celery and sauté until softened, about 8 minutes. Remove the pot from the heat.

Place a large sauté pan over high heat and film the bottom with olive oil. Working in batches, add the boar and brown on all sides, adding oil as needed and seasoning with salt and pepper as you turn the meat. Each batch should take 8 to 10 minutes. As each batch is ready, use a slotted spoon to transfer it to the Dutch oven.

When all of the meat is in the Dutch oven, return the pot to medium heat. Add the wine, cover, and cook for 15 minutes. Stir in the mustard, reduce the heat to low, re-cover, and cook, adding the stock as needed to keep the stew moist and juicy, until the meat is very tender, about 1½ to 2 hours.

Taste and adjust the seasoning, then serve.

Wine

Montepulciano d’Abruzzo is the logical local choice, but Rosso Conero or Rosso Piceno from the neighboring Marches would also satisfy.