Mushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

Mushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

I discovered this amazing mushroom ragu with torn pasta when traveling in Italy, in the lovely town of Macerata. After a morning of wandering I stumbled upon a small, unassuming restaurant with the word Funghi scribbled on a board outside. Even with my limited grasp of Italian I knew what was on special.

The ordeals of Italian food in Italy

I was fast tiring of the 25 course lunches I'd been enduring all week, so was determined to keep it small. After some stern refusals of antipasti the waiter finally allowed me to skip straight to pasta.

I forget the Italian name for the dish, but it arrived in all its rustic splendour - what appeared to be some mushrooms tipped on torn up lasagne sheets. It's always the same in Italy - a dish looks so ordinary in appearance that when you taste that first mouthful you once again realise you've been duped. HOW CAN THIS POSSIBLY BE SO DELICIOUS!? I can't do the taste justice with words to be honest - the earthy umami hit of the mushrooms infused with the fresh herbs and sharp salty cheese were something else.

The simplicity of the fresh pasta, just torn into small pieces and tossed with the mushrooms was as honest as it gets, but it sure did leave a lasting impression.

On my return, I set to make my version at home. I must say, while it's probably not as delicious, it's pretty damn close.

Make your own pasta from scratch

You'll need to make a batch of fresh pasta. My handy, helpful guide will show you how to make the perfect pasta every time.

How to make my Mushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

Mushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

RatingYields2 Servings

Ingredients

4 tbsp olive oil
2 brown shallots (finely diced)
3 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
3 tbsp fresh oregano
500 brown mushrooms
1 cup dry with wine
300 ml chicken stock
Salt & pepper
2 tbsp unsalted butter
cup Parmigiano Reggiano

Directions

1

Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in 350ml hot water for 20 minutes. Remove the mushrooms and squeeze the excess liquid out then chop finely. Retain the soaking liquid by passing through a fine sieve to get rid of any grit.

2

Meanwhile, lightly fry the shallot, garlic, sage, thyme, rosemary and bay leaf over a moderate heat until the shallots are soft (about 5 minutes).

3

Add the chopped mushrooms and porcini and fry for a further 8 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the wine and chopped tomato and stir for 3-4 minutes until the tomatoes are soft. Add the stock and porcini soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium/low and let it gently simmer for 20 minutes until the liquid has halved.

4

Fish out the herbs and discard, then add the butter and cheese and stir quickly to emulsify the sauce.

Notes
5

I made some fresh pasta and then tore small pieces off a sheet, straight into the boiling water. If you're using store bought, but fresh or dried lasagne sheets and do the same. Or, use a thick ribboned pasta like pappardelle or fettuccini.

Toss the pasta with the sauce, adding a few spoonfuls of the pasta cooking liquid to loosen the sauce.

Sprinkle over more Parmigiano Reggiano just before eating.

Ingredients

 4 tbsp olive oil
 2 brown shallots (finely diced)
 3 garlic cloves (finely chopped)
 3 tbsp fresh oregano
 500 brown mushrooms
 1 cup dry with wine
 300 ml chicken stock
 Salt & pepper
 2 tbsp unsalted butter
  cup Parmigiano Reggiano

Directions

1

Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in 350ml hot water for 20 minutes. Remove the mushrooms and squeeze the excess liquid out then chop finely. Retain the soaking liquid by passing through a fine sieve to get rid of any grit.

2

Meanwhile, lightly fry the shallot, garlic, sage, thyme, rosemary and bay leaf over a moderate heat until the shallots are soft (about 5 minutes).

3

Add the chopped mushrooms and porcini and fry for a further 8 minutes, stirring regularly. Add the wine and chopped tomato and stir for 3-4 minutes until the tomatoes are soft. Add the stock and porcini soaking liquid and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium/low and let it gently simmer for 20 minutes until the liquid has halved.

4

Fish out the herbs and discard, then add the butter and cheese and stir quickly to emulsify the sauce.

Notes
5

I made some fresh pasta and then tore small pieces off a sheet, straight into the boiling water. If you're using store bought, but fresh or dried lasagne sheets and do the same. Or, use a thick ribboned pasta like pappardelle or fettuccini.

Toss the pasta with the sauce, adding a few spoonfuls of the pasta cooking liquid to loosen the sauce.

Sprinkle over more Parmigiano Reggiano just before eating.

Mushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

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Mushroom Ragu with Torn PastaMushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

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Mushroom Ragu with Torn PastaMushroom Ragu with Torn Pasta

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