Monday, December 28, 2009

Particular Pasta Persuit

Sorry for the lack of posts during the last couple of weeks. I have been in Louisiana for a wedding and for the holidays. I had a lovely time, but have missed my little blog dearly. I am happy to be back in my own kitchen and back to my regular blogging schedule. I cooked quite a bit over the last couple of weeks, but mostly things that I have made before and previously blogged. Christmas is a great time for me to redo some recipes that I found to be a huge success and can't wait to try out again on my family and friends in New Orleans. So even though I was busy cooking over the holidays, I didn't make any new recipes that would be potential blog material.

I prepared this dish a few weeks ago and am excited to finally share it here. It was really easy and delicious. The hardest part was finding bucatini. Bucatini is a thick spaghetti-like pasta with a hole running through the center. I have made recipes before that called for the unique pasta and simply subbed a flat long noodle like linguine. I was determined to find the bucatini this time since I revel in unique ingredient searches. I finally found the bucatini at Dean and Deluca in Georgetown. I love specialty markets and could spend hours browsing their shelves. I saw this recipe in October and didn't find the particular pasta until about two months later. It was well worth the wait and I can't wait to whip up another dish with this pierced pasta!

Bucatini with Mushrooms
Adapted from Cooking Light October 2009

Yield: 4 servings

  • 1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms (about 1/2 ounce)
  • 2/3 cup boiling water
  • 8 ounces uncooked bucatini
  • 3 1/2 teaspoons salt, divided
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped shallots
  • 2 (4-ounce) packages exotic mushroom blend, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 2 tablespoons dry marsala wine
  • 2 ounces Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, divided
  • 1/4 cup heavy whipping cream
  • 1 teaspoon finely chopped fresh basil
  • 1/2 teaspoon cracked black pepper
  • Basil sprigs (optional)

1. Rinse porcini thoroughly. Combine porcini and 2/3 cup boiling water in a pot; cover and let stand 5 minutes while continuing to boil. Remove pot from the heat and let stand 25 more minutes.

Drain in a sieve over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup soaking liquid. Chop porcini.

2. Cook pasta with 1 tablespoon salt in boiling water 10 minutes or until al dente; drain in a colander over a bowl, reserving 1/4 cup cooking liquid.

3. Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add shallots, mushroom blend, and garlic; sauté 5 minutes, stirring frequently.

Stir in porcini, wine, and 1/4 teaspoon salt; cook 1 minute or until liquid evaporates.

4. Finely grate 1 ounce cheese; crumble remaining cheese. Reduce heat to medium. Stir in pasta, 1/4 cup reserved cooking liquid, 1/4 cup reserved porcini soaking liquid, remaining 1/4 teaspoon salt, 1/4 cup grated cheese, cream, chopped basil, and pepper; toss well to combine.

Place about 1 1/4 cups pasta mixture on each of 4 plates; top each serving with about 1 tablespoon crumbled cheese. Garnish with basil chiffonades, if desired.


Tiffiny Felix said...

I love, love, love mushrooms! This looks wonderful!! :)

Kerstin said...

I always look forward to browsing specialty markets too! We are huge mushroom fans and would love this - it looks so flavorful!

Angie Heise said...

Okay - I've been debating about buying the pasta attachments for my Kitchen Aid mixer and this is one of the pastas it will makes. I was wondering to do you have the attachments and/or have you ever made homemade pasta?

Elizabeth said...


I think you should absolutely get the Kitchen Aid attachment for pasta making! I have had my eye on it for quite some time. I have never made homemade pasta, but read/heard that it is quite easy and even easier with the attachment for shaping. I have eaten homemade pasta before and there is nothing like it. The taste is truly perfect - it is amazing!