An easy, rich, weeknight-friendly mushroom pasta dish packed with lots of herbs, either made simple with chestnut mushrooms, or upgraded with a handful of seasonal wild mushrooms.
- 200g (7 oz) pappardelle pasta
- sea salt
- unsalted butter
- handful wild mushrooms (optional, see note)
- 1 banana shallot
- large handful chestnut mushrooms
- freshly ground black pepper
- leaves of 3–4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 3–4 sage leaves, finely chopped
- 1 garlic clove
- 1/2 tsp Worcestershire sauce
- 1/2 tsp balsamic vinegar (see note)
- generous splash white wine
- 4 tbsp vegetable or chicken stock
- 1 tbsp double cream
- small handful flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped
- parmesan shavings, for serving (use a veggie cheese if this matters to you!)
- Cook the pasta in a pan of boiling salted water as per the packets instructions.
- Meanwhile, make the sauce. Heat a knob of butter in a large frying pan set over a medium high heat. Add the wild mushrooms – tearing any larger ones into bite size pieces – and sautée for a few minutes with a good pinch of salt until just tender. Remove them from the pan with a slotted spoon and set aside.
- Peel and finely chop the shallot before adding it to the pan with another pinch of salt. Turn the heat down to medium and cook for 5 minutes or so until the shallot is soft, and just starting to brown.
- Peel and roughly chop the mushrooms before adding them to the pan with a little more salt and a generous amount of black pepper. Cook for a couple of minutes until they’re soft and just starting to colour before adding another knob of butter, the thyme, sage and the garlic – crushed – to the pan. Cook for a minute more until the garlic is aromatic.
- Add the Worcestershire sauce and the balsamic vinegar before adding a splash of wine and allow it to bubble away for a minute or so before adding the stock and the cream. Cook for another couple of minutes until the sauce has started to thicken. Season to taste with a little more salt and pepper, if needed.
- Drain the pasta and add it to the pan along with the cooked wild mushrooms and half the parsley. Stir the pasta into the sauce, still over the heat, until the sauce just clings to the pasta and the wild mushrooms are heated through.
- Serve shared between two warm bowls topped with the remaining parsley, a little more black pepper and a generous amount of parmesan shavings.
If you don’t want to use wild mushrooms, just double the amount of chestnut mushrooms in step 4.
I use my fancy, sweeter, syrupy balsamic vinegar (which just so happens to be truffle infused – this is the one I use #gifted / #ad) here that I usually reserve for dipping or finishing salads, rather than my cheaper, tangier bottle I usually cook with.