Thursday, September 1, 2011

September 1: Beef and Mushroom Nests

3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
½ pound ground beef
5 garlic cloves, minced
1 medium yellow onion, finely chopped
½ pound cremini mushrooms
   Coarse salt
   Coarse black pepper
   A couple pinches of allspice
¼ to 1/3 cup of dry red wine
½ cup beef broth
¼ cup fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped
1 28-ounce can crushed tomatoes
1 pound angel hair pasta
1 cup grated Parmigiano-Reggiano or Romano cheese
   Crusty bread, to pass at the table

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.

For the sauce, heat a deep skillet over medium-high heat, then add the EVOO and the beef. Break into very tiny bits with a wooden spoon. Lightly brown the meat to caramelize it, then reduce the heat to medium and add the garlic and onions.

Finely chop the mushrooms in a food processor, then add the bits to the skillet and cook together with the meat, onions, and garlic for 10 minutes. Season the mixture with salt and pepper and a little allspice (the thing that makes them go, “Hummmmm”), then deglaze the pan with a glug of red wine. Cook the wine off, 30 seconds, then add the stock, parsley, and tomatoes. Heat to a bubble and reduce the heat to a simmer.

Drop the pasta in the boiling water and cook al dente.

Drain the cooked pasta and toss with the sauce and cheese.

Adjust the salt and pepper and roll the pasta into nests. Serve with salad and bread.


This is the last variation on the Pasta nests. I do believe this is the best one. It's very similar to my own recipe for spaghetti, but with added mushrooms.

My only change was to add the salad to the ingredient list.

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