Oyster Mushroom Bolognese with Pappardelle

Oyster Mushroom Bolognese with Pappardelle

A fresh twist on a classic Italian favorite. Oyster mushrooms give a delightful flavor to a pasta dish that will satisfy your taste buds.

Recipe courtesy of Krista Towns


  • 1/4 cup dried porcini mushrooms
  • 1 cup red wine, mushroom or chicken stock
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 1 /2 small onion, minced
  • 1/4 fennel bulb, minced
  • 2 pounds oyster, cremini or button mushrooms (4-5 cups)- or substitute 3 cups duxelles, pg.xxx
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons tomato paste
  • 16 ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, puréed or use passata 1 pinch red chili flakes
  • 2” piece Parmesan rind plus additional 1/4 cup grated
  • 1/3 cup milk (optional)
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 12 ounces pappardelle, tagliatelle or bucatini


Place the dried mushrooms and wine into a small saucepan over
medium heat and simmer until the wine is reduced by half. Remove from heat and let steep while making the sauce.

Pulse the mushrooms into 1/8 to 1/4 dice in a food processor or chop by hand. Heat the oil in a skillet over medium low heat, sauté the garlic, onion and fennel until softened. Raise the heat to medium, add the mushrooms, salt and pepper and cook for about cook for about 7-8 minutes adding more oil if needed until the mushrooms have released and reabsorbed their liquid. Add the chili flakes and tomato paste and cook, stirring often, for an additional 4-5 minutes or until the tomato paste has lost its bright color and the mushrooms are thoroughly coated. Remove the dried mushrooms from the wine, chop and add to the pan along with the wine, the tomatoes, the half and half , parmesan rind and butter. Reduce the heat to low and simmer adding a bit of water or low sodium stock if necessary.

While the sauce is simmering, bring a pot of water to a boil, add salt and cook the pasta according to directions, drain, toss with a little olive oil and set aside. Reserve a cup of the cooking water if you prefer to mix the pasta and sauce together before serving.

After about 45 minutes, taste again and adjust seasoning, when it’s finished to your liking, stir in additional cheese, pour over the pasta and serve with additional grated cheese.

Note: Most Italians would prefer you toss the freshly cooked pasta into the skillet with the sauce, add about a half cup of reserved pasta water and cook for a minute or two. Pouring the sauce over the pasta without mixing makes for a nice presentation, either way delicious.

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