This was originally called "Meat-Free, Easy and Tasty: Mushroom Tetrazzini with Tagliatelle" just in case you thought my title was long...I had to change the name because I associate tetrazzini to being pasta mixed with some cans of cream of mushroom soup and baked. Anyone? Anyway, I realize this is not the case in the real world as "tetrazzini" means any pasta cooked with mushrooms, flavored with sherry or marsala, cream and parmesan cheese and that's exactly what this is.
This is comfort food, people. Creamy, satisfying, stick to your ribs, anything-but-boring comfort food. I realize it is January, the quintessential time for resolutions and I should be blogging about recipes that help out our waistlines, but I just can't this time. I have had lots of naughty food around lately for some reason and with Valentine's Day approaching, I say bring it on! Wouldn't this meal be romantic for a "night in" by the fire?
I couldn't find whole wheat tagliatelle so I substituted for linguini. If you are not married to a man who is scared of regular pasta, like I am, use tagliatelle. It's fatter and a bit more special. I can't think of anyone who wouldn't like this unless you don't like mushrooms. To that I say 1) learn to and if you can't 2) substitute spinach or just add more peas. Also for the wine: Marsala, madeira and sherry can be used interchangeably so use which ever you have.
Tagliatelle with Mushrooms, Marsala, Peas and Cream
adapted from The Rachael Ray Show, January 2011
1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
2 tablespoons butter
1 pound white mushrooms, thinly sliced
2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh thyme
Salt and pepper
1 large shallot, finely chopped (or 1/4 a small onion and 1 clove garlic)
3 to 4 large cloves garlic, finely chopped
1/4 cup dry Marsala wine
1 cup cream
1 pinch freshly grated nutmeg
About 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, plus more for topping
1 pound egg tagliatelle pasta or fettuccine
1 cup frozen peas
Finely chopped flat-leaf parsley, for garnish
Bring a large pot of water to boil for pasta.
Heat olive oil and butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms and thyme, and cook to tender, stirring occasionally, until lightly browned, 10 minutes or so. Season mushrooms with salt and pepper, and add shallots and garlic. Saute another 4-5 minutes then deglaze the pan with Marsala. Stir in cream and bring to a bubble then reduce heat to low and simmer. Season with nutmeg. When pasta is just about done, turn off heat and stir in cheese. Cover and reserve.
Cook pasta to al dente. Reserve 1/2 cup starchy cooking liquid, then drain pasta and return to hot pot with peas. Add the starchy water and mushroom sauce, and toss to combine, 1-2 minutes until pasta is coated evenly.
Serve in shallow bowls topped with parsley and pass more cheese at the table.
Use real parmesan cheese if you can. If you buy the pre-grated or powdered kind, it will clump up a bit instead of melt evenly. I knew this, but had the powdered stuff on hand so I used it. It still tasted great but I was sorry.
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