creamy triple mushroom gemelli

January 2, 2012

Every winter season should have its own favourite mushroom dish. Last January it was the winter portobello stew; this January I think it might just be this creamy triple mushroom gemelli. Rich, creamy, saucy, and earthy, with a hit of spice, it warms the soul on a chilly day. I haven’t decided whether the triple mushroom refers to the three main kinds of mushrooms I used – shiitake, enoki, and cremini – or to the three mushroom-based components of the dish – mushroom roux, mushroom sauce, and the crispy mushroom topping. But who cares? It’s all good in the name of comfort food, especially for funghi-lovers the world over.

Crispy mushrooms

8 oz wild mushrooms, enoki, baby king, shiitake, cleaned and chopped

2 – 3 tbsps olive oil

1-2 tbsps balsamic vinegar

sea salt and black pepper

4 cloves garlic, minced

small bunch thyme, leaves picked

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss all the ingredients in a mixing bowl so the mushrooms are well coated with olive oil and balsamic. Spread on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Bake in the oven for 10 – 15 minutes until mushrooms are cooked through, rich in flavour, and crispy in texture.

Mushroom Gemelli

1 small handful dried porcini or other dried mushrooms

2 tbsps flour

1 tbsp olive oil

4 or 5 cups mixed mushrooms, shiitake, cremini, portobello, chopped

6 cloves of garlic, coursely chopped

1 1/2 cups soy cream (a soy-based cream available at any specialty shop)

1/4 cup red wine

1 tbsp tomato paste

1 tsp white miso

1/8 tsp ground nutmeg

1/8 tsp cayenne

1/8 tsp turmeric

chopped fresh rosemary

sea salt and pepper

parsley for garnish

1 lb pasta, gemelli, fettucine, or another other shape of choice

Grind dried porcini mushrooms in a spice grinder until the consistency of a fine powder. Mix with the flour and set aside.

Heat olive oil in a heavy saucepan. Add chopped mushrooms and saute until they begin sweat and brown a little. Add the garlic and cook until fragrant and cooked through but not brown. When the garlic and mushrooms are done, sprinkle them with the flour and porcini mixture. Stir well until the flour is well moistened and the mushroom powder is fragrant. Keep stirring and scraping the brown bits off the bottom of the pan for 2 – 3 minutes.

As the mushroom mixture cooks, mix together the cream, red wine, tomato paste, miso, nutmeg, cayenne, turmeric, and rosemary. Start to slowly add the liquid ingredients to the mushroom mixture. You want to create a smooth, creamy sauce so add the liquids about 1/4 cup at a time stirring well as you go along. Let it simmer for a few minutes while you add sea salt and pepper to taste.

Meanwhile, cook the pasta. When the pasta is done, toss with your creamy mushroom sauce and top with crispy mushrooms and a healthy dose of parsley. Serve piping hot and raise a toast to a job well done.



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