Mushroom Pasta Bake
In many European countries, September is known as a mushroom month. Usually by the end of August, it gets slightly colder and rain falls much more often. That’s the time when forest becomes a charming place full of wild mushrooms. My parent’s house is in close proximity to the forest so sometimes I would wake up early in the morning and go into the woods to pick wild mushrooms and believe me, nothing can compare to the taste of fresh wild mushrooms. We would constantly be finding porcini, chanterelle and many more mushrooms which English names don’t even exist. It is probably one of those things that I miss the most in American kitchen, fresh wild mushrooms which are extremely hard to find in US supermarkets and generally cost fortune.
I wish my dish could be made with flavorful wild mushrooms but I am not willing to spend $100 just on mushrooms and to prepare this dish you definitely need a lot of them. I decided to compromise my taste buds a bit and used cremini mushrooms which are much cheaper than wild mushrooms but still have much more flavor than simple white, button mushroom. Eventually shitake might be used but I didn’t want any Asian flavors in my dish, I was aiming towards traditional American family meal.
Ingredients (serves 5-6):
1 package (12 oz) of pasta such as penne or bow ties
4-5 cups of cremini mushrooms
1 chopped onion
2 minced garlic cloves
1/4 cup chopped parsley
2 1/2 cup low fat milk
1 1/2 Tbsp butter
1 1/2 Tbsp flour
1/2 tsp nutmeg
1 cup parmesan
Cook pasta according to a package instructions until al dente.
Prepare white sauce. In a pot melt butter and stir in flour. Slowly add milk and whisk until no clumps are visible. Bring to a boil, lower down the heat and simmer 5 min until thickened. Season with salt and grated nutmeg. Keep stirring often when sauce cooks to prevent it from sticking to the bottom of the pot.
Nutrition Facts in 1 portion (whole dish yields 6 portions):
Kilocalories 381.81 kcal, Protein 20.22 g, Carbohydrate 54.74 g, Fat 8.58 g, Saturated Fat 4.95 g, Cholesterol 24.45 mg, Dietary Fiber 4.19 g, Sugar 8.06 g