Easy spaghetti recipe with scrummy nut and posh porcini mushroom

STEPS 5 INGREDIENTS 9 TIME 25 MINS

Suitable for budding cooks of all levels, this easy spaghetti recipe combines yummy porcini mushrooms (which even ‘shroom-haters’ usually love), with your choice of earthy walnut or moreish pistachio nuts, charismatic saffron and an optional chili kick.

spaghetti_funghi

Did I mention this easy spaghetti recipe qualifies as ‘super simple’?

Well it is… it takes just 25 minutes to make - and unless you start frying and then fall asleep, it’s virtually impossible to mess this baby up. (If it were I would have - just ask my wife Laura…!)

The first time I enjoyed this mushroom pasta recipe (known in Italian as ‘pasta al funghi’), it just became an instant favourite. I hope you’ll feel the same way. Let’s try it and see…

Serves 2

Ingredients: (For a printable PDF shopping list click here, or right-click this link and choose 'Save target/link as' to save the list for later.)

200g/7oz packet spaghetti or linguini (or fresh vegan pasta works great!)

50g/1.75oz crushed walnut pieces /pistachios

10-15g/0.5oz bag of saffron powder

50g/1.75oz fresh or dried porcini mushrooms

Half a clove of garlic

2 ‘sprigs’ (small 10cm stalks) of parsley

Extra virgin olive oil

Salt

Pepper

Optional: dried chili leaves

Equipment

Pasta pan

Frying pan

Sharp chopping knife

Sieve/colander

mushroom_pasta_recipe

STEP 1 – First let’s get prepared:

- De-shell the nuts and chop these finely.

Tip: Rocking a big chopping knife backwards and forwards over the nuts works for me.

- Peel the garlic clove, chop off its ends, and cut your half into very thin slices.

- If using fresh porcini mushrooms… cut off just the very end of the stalks. Clean the remainder with kitchen paper (not paper, or they go soggy). Chop long-ways into 1/2cm slices.

If using dried porcini mushrooms… these should already be sliced. Drop them in a bowl of warm tap water for 15 mins (where they will expand), then take them out and rinse.

- Wash the parsley and remove its main stalks.

- Boil up a kettle of water and put this in the large pan on a low heat. Throw in a handful of salt.

STEP 2 – Using a pan of olive oil on a medium heat hob, fry the garlic until it browns (4-5 mins).

fried_mushrooms

Turn down to a low heat and add: mushrooms, torn parsley leaves, 2 teaspoons of salt and a pinch of pepper.

Fry gently until the mushrooms soften and shrivel (see pic). Allow around 5-6 minutes for this.

STEP 3 – Add the chopped nuts and saffron powder. Mix well and fry for a further 2 mins. Then take off the heat.

STEP 4 – Crank up your pasta water and when boiling throw in the spaghetti or linguini.

Cook as per its packet’s instructions (usually 10 mins).

Note: In future, you can speed up this recipe further by starting to cook the pasta at the same time as frying the mushrooms.

STEP 5 – When the pasta is ready, drain and drop it in the frying pan.

On a medium heat hob, stir for 2 more minutes - until the spaghetti is covered in oil. Also add any dried chili you like.

Tip: If there isn’t enough oil to cover all the pasta, drizzle in just a little more cold.

Done!

As easy spaghetti recipes go, I reckon this one takes some beating.

To serve: My Italian family enjoys this dish on its own, although it is handy to have some softish bread around for oil and nut ‘mop-up’!

Did you enjoy this pasta con funghi?

Then why not try...

Spaghetti bolognese - the daddy of all Italian pasta meals, offered here in authentic meat-focused form

More vegetarian pasta recipes - healthy, nutritious and totally flesh-free

• This spaghetti, tuna and anchovy recipe - a healthy and delicious way to use up any remaining long pasta.



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