Living in Oregon, Darryl and Sarah Joannides are surrounded by wild mushrooms: shiitakes, Portobellos and oyster mushrooms are staples, and chanterelles, chicken-of-the-woods and lobsters add seasonal variety. Darryl never salts mushrooms, because they'll absorb too much of the seasoning. Instead, he uses Pecorino cheese here to flavor the dish.
Fast Weekday Pastas
1 1/2 teaspoons fennel seeds
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
1/4 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pound mixed wild mushrooms, stemmed as necessary and thickly sliced
1 tablespoon finely chopped rosemary
1 teaspoon freshly ground pepper
1 pound pennette or penne rigate
6 ounces arugula, large stems removed, leaves coarsely chopped
1/4 cup freshly grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus more for serving
How to Make It
In a small skillet, toast the fennel seeds over moderate heat until golden and fragrant, about 2 minutes. Transfer the fennel seeds to a plate.
In a large deep skillet, melt the butter in 1/4 cup of the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until golden. Add the mushrooms, fennel seeds, rosemary and pepper and cook, stirring occasionally, until the mushrooms are tender, about 15 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook the pennette in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente; drain. Add the pasta to the mushrooms along with the arugula, 1/4 cup of grated Pecorino and the 1 remaining tablespoon of olive oil. Mound on plates and serve with the extra Pecorino.
A Barbera D'Alba has dark fruit flavors, which bring out the distinctive flavors of the mushrooms in this dish.
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