Thursday Night Nicoise Salad

Thursday Night Nicoise Salad
Allow all of your salad stars to shine on their own. Dress each component of your salad individually and pile onto a platter. Simple food is just so darn pretty. Make something like this whatever you have on hand!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Penne Porcini


My wonderful sister-in-law, Norma, recently called me to find out where to buy porcini mushrooms around here . . . . "Kath, you know the Penne Porcini at Cafe Borgia? . . . The recipe is on their website . . . http://www.cafeborgia.com/ and . . . it's really simple!" For any of you Chicago south suburbanites that have enjoyed the amazing Roman style fare at Cafe Borgia, formerly on Torrence Avenue in Lansing and now located in Munster, Indiana . . . you may have tried their luscious and creamy Penne Porcini. It's simply perfect. An intensely mushroomy, creamy, decadent sauce perfectly coats firm penne pasta in this mouth-watering, memorable dish.

The recipe on their site (shown below) calls for 8 ounces of porcini mushrooms (soaked in water). I would recommend using 2 to 3 ounces of dried porcini mushrooms. Toss them into a bowl and cover with boiling water or super hot tap water. Let them come to life while you're preparing for the rest of your meal, I'd say about 20 minutes or so. The reconstituted "shrooms" will probably weigh around 8 ounces.
Here's the recipe exactly as it appears on their website . . . I've added some pictures to guide you through the steps. It's unbelievably easy and your friends will be so impressed. I believe that fat = easy. Don't you? Fattening recipes are always easier. LOL. Buon Appetito!

Cafe Borgia's Penne Porcini

1 lb. penne pasta

8 oz. porcini mushrooms (soaked in water)

4 tbsp. butter
16 oz. heavy whipping cream

1/2 cup grated parmesan cheese

salt and pepper

1. Boil pasta in saltwater until al dente.
2. Combine cream, butter and porcini. Simmer.
3. Add pasta to the sauce.
4. Add parmesan cheese to thicken the sauce. Add salt and pepper to taste.













Let me know when you try this recipe. It will not disappoint! You can buy dried porcinis at Trader Joe's, Rubino Imports and other specialty food shops. They usually come in small cellophane bags. Some good grocery stores stock them. If your store doesn't carry them, ask them to order some for you!

Travel Note: A few years back, Mark & I had
extreme pleasure of enjoying a rustic Italian dinner, featuring fresh porcinis in a lovely little spot along northern Italy's Ligurian coast. We were greeted by a young girl who was proudly displaying a big basket filled with amazing fresh porcinis. We were given the opportunity to individually select the mushrooms which they would prepare for our dinner. What an incredible experience! That was the same night we were introduced to Brunello D'Montalcino. A truly wonderful memory.
Shroom Link:An online source with a gazillion mushroom options for fungi-lovers, check out http://www.oregonmushrooms.com/ . I'm "this close" to ordering some fresh, USA porcinis. They grow wild in Oregon and California, however, they are not the same as their European cousins which have a meatier, darker and more robust mushroom flavor. They're prettier though.
Katie's Helpful Shroom Notes: Porcinis do not have any pyschedelic properties. Sorry. By the way, doesn't Penne Porcini sound prettier than Quill Cep? I'd say so. K ~ Everyone ~ Fungi Time!

Love, Katie

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From here, you can continue scrolling down to check out some of my favorite dishes and KPK highlights.

For more posts (articles), recipes, stories and pictures, you can scroll up (in the right column under "What You Missed") and click on 2008, 2009 2010, 2011, 2012 or 2013. As of June, 2013, there are are total of 139 posts in KPK. You can spend more time here when you know where to look, right?! Another way to enjoy my kitchen is to click on any items of interest in the section entitled "Passion Posts", also up above in the right column.

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