Out in California, we enjoyed frequenting a hot spot called Fuzio. Their specialties were funky martinis and internationally inspired pasta dishes.
Every once in a while, I get a hankering for either their Firecracker Pork, or the Barbwire Chicken. I’ve looked online for copycat recipes, but without much luck. This time, I kept at it and, thanks to Uncle Phaedrus, Finder of Lost Recipes and some lucky guesses, I managed to put together a decent rendition of each dish.
Since the pork required an overnight marinade, I set that up and tackled the chicken first.
Not-Fuzio’s Barbwire Chicken
3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1 shallot, minced
2-3 chipotle peppers in adobo sauce (canned; found mine near enchilada sauce), seeded and minced
1/2 pint heavy cream
1/4 c. milk, mixed with 2T of the canned adobo sauce from the chilis
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp fresh tarragon, minced (if you can get it)
2 Anaheim chilis, seeded and chopped
1 large red pepper, roasted
1 cup fresh corn, cut from ear (frozen works, too)
1 lb. pasta
Slice, saute in the olive oil, and set aside 3 boneless, skinless chicken breasts.
Cook pasta according to directions (I used some zitini that Linc had picked out from the pasta mountain in our pantry). Drain.
Roast pepper over open flame until blackened. Cut in half and scrape out seeds, turn over and scrape off burned skin. Chop into 1/4″ chunks.
Melt butter in saucepan, add shallot and cook till tender. Add half of the chilis and the cream, heating slowly. Mix in milk with adobo sauce, and the remaining chilis, tasting for spiciness (I used all of them). Add salt and tarragon, and keep warm.
Saute Anaheims in olive oil until soft. Toss in corn, chicken, red bell pepper and warm together.
Put pasta into serving dish. Pour sauce over it. Dump in veggies and chicken. Stir and devour!
Not-Fuzio’s Firecracker Pork Fusilli
1 lb. boneless pork chops, about 1/2″ thick (tenderloin is good, too)
6 cloves garlic, peeled and crushed
1 onion, chopped finely
1/2 bunch of fresh cilantro
Thumb-sized knob of fresh ginger, grated
2 c. pineapple juice
1 c. soy sauce
1 Habanero pepper, halved, seeded, and roughly chopped (be careful! use gloves if you have them)
Bunch of green onions, sliced roughly
1/4 cup olive oil (more if necessary)
The other half-bunch of cilantro
1 lb. pasta (I used corkscrew)
Mix the marinade the day before. I chopped everything finely, but you could also whiz them through a food processor or blender. Marinate pork for 24 hours (make sure marinade covers meat completely).
Separate pork and marinade. DO NOT THROW AWAY MARINADE!
Sear pork in hot pan with a thin layer of oil until brown, about 30 seconds on each side. Add marinade, cover and simmer for 2 hours.
Make Habanero Pesto by whizzing the pepper, onions, olive oil and cilatro in a blender. Be careful! The habanero can really hurt your eyes.
Cook pasta according to instructions.
Remove pork to cutting board; strain solids from sauce, let sit so fat can separate. Using two forks, shred pork.
Remove fat from sauce (I want to get one of these things!), return to pan and reduce for about 15 minutes.
Once pasta is drained, toss with pork bits and reduced sauce. Serve in bowl with a generous dollop of sour cream, then about a teaspoon of the Habanero pesto drizzled over that. Sprinkle some cilantro over, if you have any left. Stir together to let flavors join, and devour!
Would love to hear feedback on these!