Mushroom Bolognese

I can’t say I could ever be a vegetarian because I love meat too much! Yet this dish is 100 percent vegetarian and 100 percent perfection. I love a classic meat bolognese. But this Mushroom Bolognese that’s all about umami gives the classic a run for its money.

Although the recipe calls for quite a bit of prep, Mushroom Bolognese will keep in the fridge for up to a week for plentiful and flavorful leftovers.

Over a bowl of al-dente tagliatelle and an earthy glass of an Italian red like Nebbiolo, prepare to be amazed at just how good vegetarian food can really be.

 

[This recipe is an adaptation from Food & Wine Magazine.]

 

Makes: 4 large portions

The Ingredients

1-pound mushroom or regular high-quality tagliatelle pasta

8 ounces cremini mushrooms, caps sliced and stems removed

1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms

10 ounces shiitake mushrooms, in ¼ inch dice

1 medium Vidalia onion, finely diced

2 carrots, finely diced

6 garlic cloves, finely minced

Small (8 ounce) eggplant, peeled and cut into ¼ inch dice

2 tablespoons tomato paste

28-ounce can San Marzano tomatoes, with juice and crushed by hand (I like Famoso brand)

2-inch chunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano

1 teaspoon soy sauce

1 tablespoon white miso paste

1 sprig fresh thyme

4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

½ teaspoon freshly ground pepper

Parsley, finely chopped to garnish

 

The Steps

Reconstitute 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms in 1 ½ cup hot water. Save porcini water after removing mushrooms.

In large pot, sweat onion and carrots for 5 minutes in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add eggplant with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sauté for 5 minutes until soft.

Stir in finely chopped reconstituted porcini mushrooms and ½ cup of reserved porcini liquid.

Add cremini mushrooms and shiitake mushrooms. Add soy and ground pepper, and cook over medium heat until mushrooms lose their liquid.

Stir in garlic, tomato paste, and white miso paste. Cook 2 minutes.

Add Marzano tomatoes, chunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano, and thyme sprig. Cover and simmer over low heat for 1-2 hours adding additional reserved porcini liquid to achieve desired consistency.

Toss with al dente tagliatelle and garnish with chopped parsley.

Talk about making vegetarian great again!

 

The Steps with Pictures

Reconstitute 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms in 1 ½ cup hot water. Save porcini water after removing mushrooms.

In large pot, sweat onion and carrots for 5 minutes in 2 tablespoons olive oil. Add eggplant with 2 tablespoons olive oil. Sauté for 5 minutes until soft.

Stir in finely chopped reconstituted porcini mushrooms and ½ cup of reserved porcini liquid.

Add cremini mushrooms and shiitake mushrooms. Add soy and ground pepper, and cook over medium heat until mushrooms lose their liquid.

Stir in garlic, tomato paste, and white miso paste. Cook 2 minutes.

Add Marzano tomatoes, chunk of Parmigiano-Reggiano, and thyme sprig. Cover and simmer over low heat for 1-2 hours adding additional reserved porcini liquid to achieve desired consistency.

Toss with al dente tagliatelle and garnish with chopped parsley.

Talk about making vegetarian great again!

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