Foodbuzz 24 x 24 | An Ode to Orvieto
This recipe was a part of a special menu for Foodbuzz’s June 2011 food blogger party, 24×24. Showcasing posts from 24 Foodbuzz Featured Publisher bloggers, the monthly Foodbuzz 24 highlights unique meals occurring around the globe during a 24-hour period. Read more about my meal along with all of the other recipes at An Ode to Orvieto.
No hyperbole employed, the first time that I ate this pasta, everything was illuminated. My good buddy and a beautiful soul through and through, Lauren S., was a huge fan of this itty bitty restaurant in Orvieto called Mezza Luna. While we all had our favorite lunch spots (mine was Al Pozzo Etrusco and their pappardelle con cinghiale), occasionally we’d branch out and hit up a friend’s spot of choice. In a true moment of “when in Rome, do as the Romans do” I ordered the same as Lauren – a simple green salad dressed with olive oil and vinegar, a bottle of Orvieto Classico, and a plate of the tagliatelle with porcini mushrooms. The dish emerged from the kitchen, delicately sauced with butter and wine, brightened by a bit of parsley and just swimming with an abundance of the earthy mushrooms. It was ridiculously simple home cooking, begging the question as to whether could replicate this lunchtime joy back stateside. It was destiny that I would at least try.
The beauty if this pasta is that to get it right, you keep your flavors delicate. True to the region (and diametrically opposed to most recipes for wild mushroom pasta), the mushrooms aren’t overshadowed by garlic or red pepper. Simply tagliatelle, mushrooms, wine and butter, with a little chicken stock to gloss the strands of pasta into a heavenly state. The pasta should definitely be fresh, but use whatever cut you’d like. A fettucine width works well, but if you have fresh linguini or angel hair, they’ll be perfectly fine as stand-ins. Also, I used dried porcini to keep an earthy flavor and the ability to cook this dish all year round. However, if you can get your hands on fresh porcini (or even royal trumpets or ivory portobellos), by all means use them.
Tagliatelle with Porcini Mushrooms
1.5 oz. of dried porcini mushrooms
2 1/2 c. of stock (chicken or vegetable)
2 lb. of fresh tagliatelle
1 tbs. of olive oil
1/4 c. of fresh parsley, chopped
1 c. of stock (chicken or vegetable)
1 c. of white wine
4 cloves of garlic
2 fresh bay leaves
1/4 c. of the porcini liquid
4 tbs. of butter
Begin by adding the mushrooms to the 2 1/2 cups of stock. Bring to a boil and then turn off the heat. Cover and let sit for 30 minutes.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. In a skillet, warm the olive oil over high heat. Drain the mushrooms, reserving the soaking liquid, and add them to the olive oil, along with the whole garlic cloves and bay leaves. Add the wine and allow to reduce by half. Add the 1 c. of stock and reduce by half. Add the porcini soaking liquid and allow to simmer on medium-low. Cook your pasta until al dente (about 3 minutes) and drain. Add pasta to the mushroom sauce and plunk in the butter, tossing the pasta to form a glossy sauce. If the pasta is a bit dry, add some more of the porcini soaking liquid. Top with the parsley and serve with grated locatelli.