Penne Ai Funghi with Arugula

A romantic dinner?

This recipe is perfect for impressing your special loved one or simply to enjoy with a red. This recipe is based on the idea of pasta fagioli. It works surprisingly well. You can substitute the arugula with watercress

2 cups mixed organic mushrooms-for example,
Oyster mushrooms, maitake, or shitake-
coarsely chopped with tough stems removed
5 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 cup warm chicken (or mushroom or vegetable) stock
1 tablespoon garlic, minced
1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon lemon juice, divided
1 teaspoon dried marjoram
Salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
4 pound penne pasta
2 cups fresh arugula, washed and torn into
bite-size pieces
Grated Parmesan cheese (optional)
Flat-leafed parsley, chopped (optional)


1. Preheat your oven to 230oC. Place the mushrooms on a cookie tray and toss with 2 tablespoons of the olive oil. Roast for about 20 minutes, shaking the pan once or twice to turn the mushrooms, until they are fork tender Place the mushrooms and the stock in a food processor and pulse to a grainy puree.

2. In a large pan, heat 2 tablespoons of the olive oil over medium heat. Add the garlic, 1 tablespoon lemon juice, and marjoram and cook for a few minutes until the garlic becomes aromatic but not browned.

3. Add the mushroom puree. Cook long enough to heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste.

4. . In the meantime, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the penne. Cook until al dente, about 12 minutes. Drain and add the pasta to the mushroom sauce. Stir to combine mushroom sauce and penne and heat over medium-low heat

5. Plate up – Toss the arugula with the remaining tablespoon of olive oil and 1 teaspoon of lemon juice. You can adjust the oil or lemon juice to your taste (You don’t have to dress the salad at all-it’s very good plain as well). Serve the penne with 1/4 cup garnish of arugula on each plate.
As an alternative, dress the pasta with grated Parmesan cheese and chopped far-leafed parsley, to taste

Penne Ai Funghi with Arugula
Penne Ai Funghi with Arugula

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