Mostaccioli Delicioso

The following recipe is a weirdly tweaked yet delicious variant of Neopolitan Lasagna.

10-12 oz ground pork butt
1 large onion
3 cloves garlic
20-22 oz fresh tomatoes
4 oz white wine
4 oz water
hot pepper flakes
1/2 Tsp Italian seasoning
olive oil
1/2 Tsp sugar, if needed
3 Tbl flour
4 Tbl butter
3 cups whole milk, scalded
2/3 cup Romano or Parmagiano
pinch of nutmeg

8-9 oz mostaccioli
Cook the mostaccioli to 1 minute under al-dente. Quarter the onion. Peel the garlic. Peel and chop the tomatoes. Whole, crushed or diced canned tomatoes along with some of their juice is an acceptable substitute for the fresh tomatoes.

For the ragu, grind pork butt in food processor until it attains a medium-coarse consistency. (It should take no more than 4-5 moderately short pulses.) Remove pork from and finely chop the quartered onion and garlic cloves in the food processor. Remove onions and garlic mixture from and liquify the tomatoes in the processor. Heat a heavy sauce pan over a medium flame. Add olive oil. Add onions/garlic. Salt the onions and sweat them down until they become translucent. Add the pork and saute until all color is removed. (no need to brown.) Throw in tomatoes, white wine, chile d'arbol, and water. Adjust seasoning. Bring to boil, then cut heat to a SLOW simmer for 2 hrs. or until sauce is relatively thick. Throw in the basil. Stir, shut off heat, cover and set aside.

For the mornay, melt butter in a heavy sauce pan. Sprinkle in flour and whisk over medium heat for a minute or two. Add milk. Bring to a boil, carefully. Simmer slowly until milk reduces, somewhat. Grate in the cheese. Reduce until sauce becomes thick and bubbly. Sprinkle in the nutmeg (1/8 Tsp) and adjust seasonings. Cover and set aside.

Preheat oven to 375 F.

Construction of the dish: spread a layer of the sauce, topped with the Mornay on the bottom of 8" x 8" pyrex or aluminium baking dish. Grab a handful of the Mostaccioli noodles, separate them, and arrange them, covering the sauce/Mornay layer. Create another sauce/Mornay layer. Create another pasta layer. Create another sauce/Mornay layer. Make another pasta layer. Finish with the remaining sauce/Mornay. Top with freshly grated cheese. Bake for 45 minutes or until disk is brown and bubbly. Rotate dish every 15 minutes. Allow dish to rest 15 before slicing.