Mushroom Lasagna with Pancetta and Sage

Why this recipe works:
To make a mushroom lasagna recipe with no-boil noodles and widely available mushrooms, we found that roasted portobellos gave the dish concentrated mushroom flavor. A very loose béchamel sauce had enough liquid to properly hydrate the noodles.

If Italian fontina is not available, use whole milk mozzarella rather than a
rubbery Danish, Swedish, or American fontina. We like the mushroom sauce made with whole milk, but both skim and low-fat milk are acceptable.

*  1/2 ounce  dried porcini mushrooms , rinsed well
*  1 cup  water
*  2 pounds  portobello mushroom caps (about 10 medium), cleaned and cut into
2- to 3-inch by 1/4-inch slices
*  4 tablespoons  olive oil
*  8 ounces  pancetta , cut into 1/4-inch pieces (omit)
*  2  large red onions , chopped medium (about 4 cups)
*  8 oz button mushrooms, cleaned, stems trimmed, & broken into rough
pieces
*  4 med cloves  garlic, minced or pressed through garlic press (about 1
tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon)
*  1/2 cup  dry vermouth
*  3 tablespoons  unsalted butter, plus additional for greasing pan
*  3 tablespoons  unbleached all-purpose flour
*  3 1/2 cups  milk
*  1/4 teaspoon  nutmeg
*  1/4 cup minced fresh parsley leaves
*  1 tablespoon  minced fresh sage leaves
*  8 oz  Italian fontina cheese, rind removed and shredded (about 2 1/4
cups)
*  1 1/2ounces  grated Parmesan cheese  (about 3/4 cup)
*  12  no-boil lasagna noodles
*  2 tablespoons  minced fresh basil leaves
*  1/2 teaspoon  grated lemon zest from 1 lemon

1.  Cover porcinis with water in small microwave-safe bowl; cover with
plastic wrap, cut several steam vents in plastic with paring knife, and
microwave on high power for 30 seconds. Let stand until mushrooms soften,
about 5 minutes. Lift mushrooms from liquid with fork and roughly chop (you
should have about 3 tablespoons). Strain liquid through fine-mesh strainer
lined with paper towel into medium bowl. Set mushrooms and liquid aside.

2. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 425 degrees. Spread
portobello mushrooms in even layer on rimmed baking sheet and drizzle with 2
tablespoons oil, tossing to coat mushrooms evenly; sprinkle with 1/2
teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon pepper and toss again. Roast mushrooms until
shriveled and all liquid released from mushrooms has evaporated, about 30
minutes, stirring halfway through cooking time. Set mushrooms aside to cool.

3. While portobellos roast, heat 1 tablespoon oil and pancetta in 12-inch
nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook until pancetta is browned and
crisp, about 10 minutes. Using slotted spoon, transfer pancetta to large
bowl; pour off all but 1 tablespoon fat. Add onions, 1/4 teaspoon salt, and
1/4 teaspoon pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions are
browned around edges, about 10 minutes. Transfer onions to large bowl with
pancetta and set aside.

4. Meanwhile, process button mushrooms in food processor until uniformly
coarsely chopped, about six 1-second pulses, stopping to scrape down bowl as
needed. Heat remaining 1 tablespoon oil in now-empty skillet over
medium-high heat until shimmering. Add chopped button mushrooms and cook,
stirring occasionally, until browned and all moisture has evaporated, 6 to 8
minutes.

5. Reduce heat to medium and stir in porcini mushrooms, 1 tablespoon
garlic, 1 teaspoon salt, and 1 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring frequently,
until garlic is fragrant, about 1 minute. Add vermouth and cook, stirring
occasionally, until liquid has evaporated, 2 to 3 minutes.

6. Add butter and cook until melted. Add flour and cook, stirring
constantly, about 1 minute. Slowly add reserved porcini soaking liquid,
scraping pan bottom to loosen browned bits. Add milk and nutmeg. Increase
heat to medium-high and bring mixture to boil. Reduce heat to medium-low and
simmer until sauce has thickened and reached consistency of heavy cream, 10
to 15 minutes (you should have about 4 cups). Remove from heat and stir in 2
tablespoons parsley and sage.

7. Combine fontina and Parmesan in medium bowl. Toss cooled portobello
mushrooms with onions in large bowl. Place noodles in 13 by 9-inch ovensafe
baking dish and cover with hot tap water; let soak 5 minutes, agitating
noodles occasionally to prevent sticking. Remove noodles from water and
place in single layer on kitchen towel. Wipe baking dish dry and coat with
butter.

8. Using rubber spatula, evenly distribute 1 cup mushroom sauce in bottom
of baking dish; position 3 noodles on top of sauce. Spread 3/4 cup sauce
evenly over noodles followed by 2 cups mushroom-onion mixture and 3/4 cup
cheese. Repeat layering of noodles, sauce, mushroom-onion mixture, and
cheese two more times. Place 3 remaining noodles on top of last layer of
cheese. Spread remaining sauce over noodles and sprinkle with remaining
cheese. Lightly spray large sheet of foil with nonstick cooking spray and
cover lasagna. Bake until bubbling, about 20 minutes.

9. While lasagna is baking, combine remaining 2 tablespoons parsley and 1
teaspoon garlic with basil and lemon zest in small bowl. Increase oven
temperature to 500 degrees, remove foil from lasagna, and continue to bake
until cheese on top becomes spotty brown, 6 to 8 minutes. Remove lasagna
from oven and sprinkle evenly with herb mixture. Cool 15 minutes, then cut
into pieces and serve.

Serves 10 to 12.   Cooks Illustrated, Published September 1, 2006.

Garlicky Spaghetti with Mixed Greens
 from foodandwine.com

3/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup panko
2 tablespoons finely chopped parsley
Kosher salt & Pepper
1 pound spaghetti
2/3 cup thinly sliced garlic (about 18 cloves)
2 pounds mustard greens and kale, stemmed and leaves coarsely torn
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

In a small skillet, heat 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Add the panko and toast over moderate heat, stirring, until golden, about 
5 minutes. Stir in the parsley and season with salt and pepper. Transfer to a paper towel–lined plate to drain; let cool.

Meanwhile, in a pot of salted boiling water, cook the spaghetti until al dente. Drain well, reserving 1 cup of the pasta water.

In a large pot, combine 
the remaining 1/2 cup of oil with 
the garlic and cook over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the garlic is fragrant and 
light golden, 7 to 8 minutes. In batches, add the greens and cook, tossing, until wilted, about 3 minutes. Season with salt and pepper. Add the pasta, 1/2 cup of the reserved pasta water and the lemon juice; cook, stirring, until a sauce forms, 2 minutes. Divide the pasta among bowls and top with the panko.

Jo’s Tuna Pasta from splendidtable.org

1 lb 2 oz penne, fusilli
3 1/2 fl oz extra-virgin olive oil
1 white onion, finely diced
3 tablespoons tomato paste
2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
1 1/2 oz good-quality tinned anchovies in oil
6 1/2 oz good-quality tinned tuna in oil
freshly grated parmesan cheese, to serve

 

 

Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil, add the pasta and cook according to the packet instructions until al dente. Drain the pasta over a bowl, reserving the cooking water, return to the pan and set aside.

Heat the oil in a separate saucepan over a medium heat, add the onion and cook for 3–5 minutes until softened. Add the tomato paste, vincotto and anchovies together with the oil from the tuna tin, reduce the heat to low and cook gently for 5–8 minutes, until the onions are nicely caramelised. Add the tuna and a few splashes of the reserved pasta cooking water, increase the heat to high and cook for 10–15 minutes, adding extra splashes of the pasta water as you go, until the sauce has a thin paste-like consistency.

Tip the sauce into the pan with the pasta and toss together thoroughly to coat. Divide among bowls and scatter over lots of grated parmesan. Serve.

Spicy Roasted Broccoli Pasta by Melissa Clark

2 ½ pounds broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, more as needed
1 teaspoon cumin seeds (optional)
¾ teaspoon kosher salt, more as needed
½ teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste

  • 12 ounces chiocciole or other tube-shaped pasta
  • cup grated Parmesan cheese
  • cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
  • ½ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 12 ounces best quality, whole milk ricotta
  • Fresh lemon juice, for serving (optional)
  • Heat oven to 425 degrees. On a rimmed baking sheet, toss together broccoli, oil, cumin (if using), 3/4 teaspoon salt and the red pepper flakes. Roast until tender and browned at the edges, 18 to 25 minutes, tossing halfway through. Remove from oven and set oven to broil.
  • Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package directions; drain.
  • In a small bowl, stir together Parmesan, panko, lemon zest, a pinch of salt and the black pepper.
  • Toss cooked pasta with broccoli on baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper to taste, then dollop with ricotta. Sprinkle with Parmesan mix, drizzle generously with oil, and broil until topping is crisped and golden, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with lemon juice to taste, and serve.

Chunky Eggplant Sauce from washingtonpost.com


¼ cup extra-virgin olive oil
2 cloves garlic, chopped
One 12-ounce eggplant (unpeeled), cut into ¼ -inch by ¼ -inch by 3-inch strips
2 tablespoons plus ½ teaspoon salt, or more as needed
⅛ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, or more as needed
1 pound ripe tomatoes, peeled and diced (see NOTE)
1 teaspoon minced fresh oregano, or more as needed
12 basil leaves, torn
1 pound dried bucatini (or substitute penne rigate, rigatoni or orecchiette)

½ cup freshly grated pecorino Romano cheese, for serving

Heat the oil in a wide, deep-sided saute pan over medium-low heat. Add the garlic and cook, 30 seconds, then add the eggplant, ½ teaspoon of the salt and the pepper. Partially cover and cook for 25 minutes, stirring often, or until soft, allowing the liquid from the lid to drip into the eggplant if it seems dry.

Use a fork to crush the eggplant in the pan to a chunky consistency, then add the tomatoes and the teaspoon of fresh oregano. Increase the heat to medium; cook uncovered for 10 to 20 minutes, until the sauce is thick (the cooking time will depend on how juicy your tomatoes are). Stir in the basil and keep the sauce warm.

Meanwhile, bring 5 quarts of water to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the bucatini and the remaining 2 tablespoons of salt. Cook according to the package directions (al dente), about 8 minutes. Drain, reserving ½ cup of the pasta cooking water.

Add the drained pasta to the sauce in the pan, and add just enough of the reserved pasta cooking water to create a sauce that coats the bucatini. Taste, and add more salt and/or pepper and oregano, as needed.

Serve hot, dusted with the cheese.

4 to 6 servings (makes about 1⅔ cups sauce, enough for 1 pound of pasta)

NOTE: To peel the tomatoes, use a sharp knife to score a large X on the bottom of each one. Drop into a bowl of just-boiled water and let sit for a few minutes, until you see the peel curling back from the edges of the X. Drain and let cool, then peel and discard the loosened skin.

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Creamy Corn Pasta With Basil from NY Times

  • Fine sea salt
  • 12 ounces dry orecchiette or farfalle
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 bunch scallions (about 8), trimmed and thinly sliced (keep the whites and greens separate)
  • 2 large ears corn, shucked and kernels removed (2 cups kernels)
  • ½ teaspoon ground black pepper, more for serving
  • 3 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, more to taste
  • cup torn basil or mint, more for garnish
  • ¼ teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
  • Fresh lemon juice, as needed
  1. Bring a large pot of well-salted water to a boil. Cook pasta until 1 minute shy of al dente, according to the package directions. Drain, reserving 1/2 cup of pasta water.
  2. Meanwhile, heat oil in large sauté pan over medium heat; add scallion whites and a pinch of salt and cook until soft, 3 minutes. Add 1/4 cup water and all but 1/4 cup corn; simmer until corn is heated through and almost tender, 3 to 5 minutes. Add 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper, transfer to a blender, and purée mixture until smooth, adding a little extra water if needed to get a thick but pourable texture.
  3. Heat the same skillet over high heat. Add butter and let melt. Add reserved 1/4 cup corn and cook until tender, 1 to 2 minutes. (It’s O.K. if the butter browns; that deepens the flavor.) Add the corn purée and cook for 30 seconds to heat and combine the flavors.
  4. Reduce heat to medium. Add pasta and half the reserved pasta cooking water, tossing to coat. Cook for 1 minute, then add a little more of the pasta cooking water if the mixture seems too thick. Stir in 1/4 cup of the scallion greens, the Parmesan, the herbs, the red pepper flakes, 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon pepper. Sprinkle with fresh lemon juice to taste. Transfer to warm pasta bowls and garnish with more scallions, herbs, a drizzle of olive oil and black pepper.

Pizzoccheri Gratin from Jonathon Sawyer

original-201212-r-pizzoccheri-gratin.jpgIn Northern Italy, pizzoccheri are short, flat buckwheat noodles cooked with cabbage and potatoes and layered with cheese.You may need to use fresh lasagna sheets cut into noodles (buckwheat noodles can be hard to find) and bake them in a gratin dish with a crispy bread crumb topping.

Step 1 Preheat the oven to 350°. In a small skillet, melt 6 tablespoons of the butter with the sage, poppy seeds and caraway seeds and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until nutty and fragrant, about 5 minutes. Transfer to a bowl.

Step 2  Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the potato and cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the potato to a bowl. Add the pasta to the pot and cook, stirring, until al dente, about 2 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pasta to a colander. Add the cabbage to the pot and cook until just wilted, about 3 minutes. Drain the cabbage and shake out the excess water. Pour off the water and return the cabbage to the pot, along with the pasta and potato. Add the browned butter, season with salt and pepper and toss well. Stir in 1 cup of the Fontina and half of the Parmigiano and transfer the mixture to a 9-by-13-inch baking dish.

Step 3  In the small skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Add the bread crumbs and parsley and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until golden and toasted, 3 minutes. Stir in the remaining Fontina and Parmigiano and sprinkle over the pasta. Bake for 35 minutes, or until golden brown on top. Serve hot.  Serves : 8

Make Ahead

The unbaked gratin can be refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature before baking.

Michael Ruhlman’s Pasta with Tomato Water, Basil, and Garlic

  • ripe tomatoes, large dice
  • 1 1/2 to 2teaspoons coarse kosher salt
  • 12 ounces spaghetti or any pasta you like
  • 10 cloves of garlic
  • cup basil, cut into ribbons
  • ounces butter, cut into three chunks
  • Olive oil, as needed
  1. Season the tomatoes with the salt and toss them well.
  2. Put a big pot of water on to boil.
  3. Smash the garlic with the flat side of a knife, give it all a few rough chops with the knife and set them a side in a small bowl.
  4. Cut the basil into ribbons or roughly chop it. Take a pinch of this basil, chop it finely, and add it to the tomatoes to season the water.
  5. Cook your pasta, drain it, put it back in the pot, and oil the pasta to keep it from sticking to itself. (Meanwhile, even if your water isn’t boiling yet, you should still get your garlic cooking in the next step).
  6. Heat a teaspoon or two of olive oil in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, add the garlic and cook it till it is just beginning to brown around the edges and soften, a couple minutes. Give it a pinch of salt if you wish.
  7. Pour the tomatoes into a strainer or colander over the garlic so that the tomato water will stream into the pan below. Set the strainer with the tomatoes into the bowl so they don’t drip on the counter, and swirl the sauce to bring it to a simmer. Add the butter while continuing to swirl or stir the sauce. Keep the sauce moving until all the butter is melted. Add the pasta and toss to coat the pasta evenly. Divide the pasta among four bowls and top with the tomatoes and basil.  Serves 2 to 4

one pot garlic butter parmesan mushroom pasta from savorynothings.com

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 3-4 cloves garlic
  • 1 pound sliced mushrooms
  • 1 tablespoon dried Italian herbs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 5 cups water, stock or milk
  • 1 pound spaghettiuncooked
  • 2-3 tablespoons butter
  • 3/4 cup cream cheese
  • 3 ounces finely grated parmesan
  1. Heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add the oil and cook the garlic and mushrooms until softened, about 4 minutes.

  2. Add the herbs, salt, liquid and spaghetti. Bring to a boil, then simmer for 10 minutes or until the pasta is done.

  3. Stir in the butter, cream cheese and parmesan. Serve immediately.

Recipe Notes

If the pasta looks too dry, add up to 1 more cup liquid. How much liquid you need really depends on the kind of pasta you use and how you like your sauce!

 

Salmon Pasta with Green Goddess Pesto from thewoksoflife.com/

  • 1 large handful of basil (about 1 cup chopped)
  • 1 large handful of parsley (about 1 cup chopped)
  • 1 small handful of dill (about ½ cup chopped)
  • 1 small bunch of chives (about ½ cup chopped)
  • 2 scallions, chopped into 1-inch pieces
  • The leaves from 3 stalks of tarragon (stems discarded)
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper, plus more to taste
  • ½ cup extra virgin olive oil, plus 2 tablespoons
  • 1½ pound salmon fillet
  • 1 pound dried fettuccine
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 6 cloves garlic, finely chopped
  • ⅓ cup capers, drained and roughly chopped
  • 1 cup heavy cream
  • 2 cups frozen peas
  • Zest of a whole lemon
  • First make the green goddess pesto. In the bowl of a food processor, add the basil, parsley, dill, chives, scallions, tarragon, lemon juice, salt, black pepper, and olive oil. Process until smooth, scraping down the sides of the bowl as needed.
  • Next, rinse your salmon fillet, pat it dry with a paper towel, and season with salt. Heat two tablespoons of olive oil in a cast-iron skillet over medium-high heat. Sear the salmon until cooked through on both sides, approximately 5-6 minutes per side (depending on the thickness of the fish and your preference for doneness). When it’s cooked to your liking, transfer to a plate, and with two forks, flake the salmon.
  • Next, bring a pot of salted water up to a boil. Boil the pasta according to package instructions until al dente.
  • While the pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add the butter and the garlic. Stir the garlic until lightly browned, and then add the capers. Turn the heat all the way down to low, and stir to combine. Add the heavy cream, followed by the peas. Stir to warm the peas through.
  • Add the cooked pasta and stir thoroughly until the pasta is coated in the cream. Next, add the pesto and stir to combine. Top with the flaked salmon, additional black pepper to taste, and lemon zest.