Earthy, or grassy? Mushroomy! A guest post from Jens.

This is the dish referred to in this post, made while the butternut squash was roasting in the oven. It’s easy, quick, and delicious. The key is to get good, flavorful mushrooms. I can’t imagine this working with plain white buttons.

Normally after the cookery is done and Jens and I are eating, I do an “interview with the chef” and get a quick rundown of the ingredients and cooking process. This interview is several weeks late, and Jens did most of the writing.

It’s sort of meta to have a guest post by Jens, on a cooking blog that features his cooking.

Here’s what I remember from the mushroom pasta (Musharoni and cream?). What a simple recipe, hah – I must be forgetting something?

This one is rich, simple, and should bring you to a very mushroomy terroir (maybe a cave?). Mushrooms, browning, butter and cream – that’s it and that’s all. The wild enoki mushrooms have such a great flavor and really make the dish, if you don’t have them garlic and enokis get along wonderfully.


1 bunch of wild enotaki (they have other names, such as Persimmon enoki; here’s a post from another blog that uses them with tiny pickled shrimp!)
2 packets of white enoki mushrooms
1/2 cup or more halved and sliced crimini mushrooms. Use the stems if you like. (ed. note: I don’t like the stems. Jens does. Sometimes I win, sometimes I lose.)
1/4 c heavy cream (you can make it as creamy as you like it)
2 tbs butter

1/2 lb elbow pasta. I recommend Barilla, the curlicue shape and ridges help sauce cling to the pasta.

Instructions (Jens wrote up this recipe)

1.Put a pot of water on to boil for pasta. (ed. note: in “French Cooking in 10 minutes” the author recommends always putting a pot of water on to boil before you start the rest of your cooking. Great tip, even when you’re not sure if you’ll need it. Obviously you need it here since this is a pasta dish, but wanted to share.)

2. Melt butter in a saute pan. Add  mushrooms. It will take a while – I recommend tearing the regular and wild enokis into many small clumps of stems. When all of your mushrooms go in, you should be shocked at how much you have in the pan – they will shrink down a lot. We want as much surface area as possible for browning! These mushrooms don’t need to be cooked this much, but their texture softens as they do, which works well with the pasta, and they get a nice toasty flavor when browned. Stir only occasionally, when you’re worried about burning or things sticking to the pan. Saute for 20 minutes or until nicely browned

3. Add the pasta to the boiling water when the mushrooms are close to done. When the mushrooms are browned, pour in the cream and turn off the heat. I was very low on cream so I added a splash of water, as the mushrooms should be rather dry by now. I let this rest for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally, and turning the heat to low once it started to cool. Taste and add adjust seasoning as needed. Mix together and serve immediately.

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3 Responses to “Earthy, or grassy? Mushroomy! A guest post from Jens.”

  1. Wow, mushrooms and more mushrooms and even more mushrooms + pasta and butter. Fortunately we have a source (Ocean State Job Lot) for incredibly cheap dried mushrooms with lots of variety. I can already smell the lovely aroma them frying…

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