Monday, June 10, 2013

Recipe // Spinach Fettuccine with King Oyster Mushrooms, Vidalia Onions, Pancetta and Creme Fraiche

One of my very favorite things about living in Napa is the availability of amazing produce all year round.  So, conveniently when you're pregnant and have a craving for something, you can usually find it at the market.   Well, lately I've had this absurd craving for truffles (obviously not one of those readily available things at the market) and had an urge to use the truffle salt I got as a gift and the white truffle oil I had at home. Yesterday while I was cruising whole foods (as I've been known to do... sometimes wandering the store endlessly and leaving with nothing.. you know, cruising) I saw some amazing looking king oyster mushrooms that would be perfect vessel for my craving.  These are what we would have for dinner tonight in some way, shape, or form.  Pasta would most likely be involved.  

For Kentucky, I added pancetta and rosemary to the mix.  The vidalia onions were chosen for that special place they hold in my heart for my mom's roasted version (prepared with butter).  Vidalias are much sweeter than regular onions and add that yummy carmelized flavor without adding too much else.  To add some color and contrast, I used spinach fettuccine and peas and then finished everything with some creme fraiche, because who doesn't love that south park episode?

Spinach Fettuccine with King Oyster Mushrooms, Vidalia Onions, Pancetta and Creme Fraiche 
(Serves 2)


1/2 pound                spinach fettuccine 
2 tablespoons          good olive oil 
1 tablespoon            white truffle oil 
4 each                     king oyster mushrooms, thinly sliced lengthwise
1/8 pound                pancetta, thinly sliced and diced 
1 handful                  frozen peas
1/2 each                  small vidalia onion, julienne 
1 each                     shallot, bruniose 
3 each                     garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 tablespoon           unsalted butter
1 sprig                     rosemary, minced 
1/2 each                 lemon, juiced
1 dollap                   creme fraiche 
                               freshly grated parmesan, to taste
                               freshly ground pepper, to taste
                               salt, to taste
                               truffle salt, to taste (optional) 

Prepare the mushrooms
In a large saute pan heat olive oil and white truffle oil on medium high, the pan should shimmer but not be smoking hot.  Add the mushrooms, lightly sprinkle with salt and cook until lightly browned.  Reserve mushrooms but keep the oil in the pan.  

Meanwhile... Boil well-salted water for the fettuccine, cook in boiling water until al dente and reserve.

Prepare the onions and the sauce

In the same saute pan, add the pancetta and cook until lightly browned but not too crispy.  The slower the pancetta is cooked, the better - lending more flavor to the rendered fat.  Once the pancetta is cooked, scoop it out with a slotted spoon and reserve.  To the rendered fat and oil, add the onions and the shallots.  They should sizzle when you add them to the pan.  Once the onion and shallot have softened, add the garlic.  Add the rosemary and the butter and cook until fragrant.  Squeeze in the lemon juice.  Add the reserved pancetta and the peas to pan to heat through.  


Toss the cooked spinach fettuccine with the sauce until well combined.  Finish with the reserved mushrooms, creme fraiche, parmesan, ground pepper and truffle salt.  

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