Let's Dish With Linda Lou

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Portobellos And Pappardelle In A Garlic Cream Sauce

on April 9, 2015

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Portobellos, have to be my very favorite mushroom. They have such a meaty flavor and texture. They’re just so delicious. My favorite pasta of course, pappardelle. It only made sense to me that I bring them together.

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Let’s talk about the mushrooms first. I have nine Portobello mushrooms that I’ve cleaned and removed the stems and gills. Then all I did was to slice them about an inch in thickness. I also have some peeled garlic cloves. I take half of the peeled  garlic cloves and grate them into a quart of whole milk that I have on very low heat, on the back burner. I just want to let the milk heat up for 3-4 minutes or so, this way the garlic will infuse into the milk. You don’t want the milk to come to a boil. After 3-4 minutes turn the heat off and let the garlic just steep in the milk.  Back to the mushrooms. I melt 3/4’s of a stick of unsalted butter in a pot with some crushed red pepper flakes. Next I add all the sliced mushroom into the pot.

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While the mushrooms have started to cook down in the butter, I add the other half of the garlic that I’ve minced to reinforce that garlic flavor throughout the dish. The mushrooms need to saute on med to med high heat for about 10-12 minutes until they’ve released all their water and have caramelized nicely. Once they are caramelized this is the time I season the mushrooms with Kosher salt. At this point I add 1/2 a cup of flour to the mushrooms. With a wooden spoon, I stir the flour around in with the mushrooms giving that flour taste to cook out, about a minute or so. Now, for that garlic flavored milk.

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I add the flavored milk to the sauteed mushrooms, still on med heat, I whisk the milk until it starts to thicken. Right as it’s starting to thicken, I add in 1 package of baby spinach. I switch back to a wooden spoon, stirring the spinach through. I add black pepper and  grate some fresh nutmeg into the pot. I always add nutmeg when I’m making a white sauce or, I’m making any type of leafy greens.  Also on the back burner I have a pound of Pappardelle cooking in salted boiling water.

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Now that the sauce has thicken, and the spinach and nutmeg have been stirred through, I turn the heat off before adding in some freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese. Finally the pasta. I cook the pasta to the al dente stage, then add in right into the pot with that garlic flavored, cheesy cream sauce. I always reserve a cup of pasta, starchy cooking liquid to help thin out the sauce if it gets a little too thick.

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To garnish some freshly chopped Italian parsley.

Yields: 4 servings
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cooking Time: 25-30 minutes
9 Portobello mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
8 cloves of garlic (4 grated and 4 minced
1 bag of fresh baby spinach
3/4’s stick of unsalted butter
1 cup of flour
1 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes
1-1/2 teaspoons of freshly grated nutmeg
1-1/2 teaspoons of black pepper
1 teaspoon of Kosher salt
1 quart of whole milk
1 cup of freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
1 package of Pappardelle pasta (reserve a cup of pasta cooking liquid)
2 tablespoons of chopped fresh Italian Parsley

Directions: First clean and slice the mushrooms. Next, prepare the garlic, minced and grated. Place two pots on the back burners, one for the milk, the other for the pasta. To the pot with the milk, on low heat add the minced garlic and let cook for 3-4 minutes. Turn the heat off and let the garlic steep in the milk. On the front burner, on med heat, melt the butter, add the crushed red pepper flakes. Throw in the mushrooms. Let cook until they start to soften and release their water, then add in the minced garlic. Once they are caramelized, 10=12 minutes or so, then add the Kosher salt in. Next add in the flour and stir through so all the mushrooms are coated and the flour has cooked out. Now, it’s time to add the garlic flavored milk in. Change to a whisk and start whisking. Add the grated nutmeg and black pepper in at this time. As the milk sauce starts to thicken, switch to a wooden spoon and add in the spinach. Stir that through until the spinach has wilted. Turn the heat off and add in the Parmigiano- Reggiano cheese. Stir the cheese through and then add in the al dente Pappardelle. Toss everything together and add parsley to garnish.


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