Monday, September 15, 2008

Spaghettini with Oyster Mushrooms

Vegan Mom and I are trying to sit down for a nice "grown up" meal once a week after the kids are in bed, but with the pace of life these days it has been more like once a month. We set aside some time on the weekend and I, knowing that Italian food is the way to Vegan Mom's heart, made this delicious dish. Back in the day I made this with scallops, but oyster mushrooms are a perfect substitute. Their delicate flavour and texture pair perfectly with the tomatoes and vermouth. I am salivating just thinking about it! The recipe is modified from a wee little book I picked up years ago called "The Pasta Book" by Julia della Croce.

Serves 4
- 12 oz spaghettini (enough for 4 servings)
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 3 large garlic cloves, minced
- 1 48 oz can chopped tomatoes, drained, with 1/2 cup of the juice reserved
- 1 generous tbsp tomato paste
- 1/3 cup dry vermouth
- 1/3 cup basil leaves, chopped (or 1-2 tsp dried)
- 1/2 tsp salt
- freshly ground white pepper
- 2 cups oyster mushrooms pieces, washed

1. Cook pasta according to directions on box.
2. While pasta is cooking, heat oil over med-lo heat in a saucepan and gently cook garlic for 4-5 mins, until softened. Raise heat to medium, add drained tomatoes and cook for 5 mins, stirring often.
3. Add reserved tomato juice, paste, and vermouth and mix well. Bring to bubbling and cook for 5 mins. Add basil, salt, and pepper and adjust to taste.
4. Add mushrooms and bring to bubbling, then reduce heat to low and cover. Let simmer for 5 mins, until mushrooms are nice and tender.
5. Drain pasta, and top with sauce.