F&W's Melissa Rubel Jacobson created this recipe to use up extra dried mushrooms and odds and ends of pasta. While the different pasta shapes cook at different rates in the water, they all become tender once baked.
More Baked Pasta Recipes
1/2 cup dried porcini mushrooms (1/2 ounce)
1 pound mixed short pasta shapes such as fusilli, farfalle, penne, and orzo
6 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 tablespoons all-purpose flour
3 cups milk
2 tablespoons heavy cream
1/2 pound shiitake mushroom, stems discarded and caps quartered
1/2 pound white button mushrooms, stems trimmed and caps quartered
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
4 1/2 ounces fontina cheese, coarsely grated (1 cup plus 2 tablespoons)
1/2 cup finely grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
How to Make It
In a heatproof glass measuring cup, cover dried porcini mushrooms with 1 cup of boiling water. Let stand until the mushrooms are soft, about 20 minutes. Drain and reserve 3/4 cup of the porcini soaking liquid. Finely chop the mushrooms.
Preheat the oven to 375°. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the mixed pasta until just shy of al dente, about 10 minutes; drain.
Meanwhile, in a large saucepan, melt 4 tablespoons of the butter. Add the flour and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until smooth, about 1 minute. Whisk in the reserved porcini liquid and the milk. Bring to a simmer and cook over moderately low heat until thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir in the cream and chopped porcini mushrooms. Scrape into a large bowl.
In a large skillet, melt the remaining 2 tablespoons of butter. Add the mushrooms, season with salt and pepper and cook over moderately high heat until browned in spots, about 5 minutes. Add the mushrooms to the porcini sauce. Stir in the pasta and fontina cheese and season with salt and pepper. Scrape the pasta into an 8 1/2-by-12-inch baking dish.
Sprinkle with the Parmigiano-Reggiano and bake for about 35 minutes, until golden and bubbly. Let stand 5 minutes before serving.
The recipe can be prepared through Step 4 and refrigerated overnight. Bring to room temperature before baking. The baked pasta can be refrigerated overnight. Reheat before serving.
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