Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Toasted Spaghetti Risotto with Mushrooms

This pasta takes on a wonderful toasty flavor and the slightly peppery arugula dressed with bright lemon juice compliments it perfectly. Enjoy!

Recipe (serves 4)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1 medium onion, chopped
2 garlic cloves, minced
salt & pepper
8-10 ounces of Crimini Mushrooms, sliced
4 cups low-sodium chicken broth *or use vegetable broth to make this vegetarian
1 pound whole wheat spaghetti, broken into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup sliced almonds or pistachios, lightly toasted
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 cup Parmesan cheese, grated
4 cups arugula
the juice of 1/2 a lemon

1. Sauté onion and garlic over medium heat in a large pan with a drizzle of olive oil until translucent ~ 1-2 minutes. Add mushrooms and saute until tender, another 2-3 minutes. Add the pasta and toast until slightly browned, ~5 minutes.
2. Stir in about 1/2 cup of the chicken broth to deglaze the pan for about 1 minute. Pour in more broth a little at a time every few minutes, stir for at least a minute each time to help release the starchiness of the pasta, the liquid should be nearly evaporated before you add more.
3. The pasta cooks fairly quickly so taste test it after about 10 minutes after you started adding the broth to prevent over cooking. Once the pasta is done, remove from the heat and stir in the butter and cheese. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
4. Make your own dressing for the arugula. Combine the lemon juice, a drizzle of olive oil, and a pinch of salt and pepper and lightly pour over arugula, you can always add more dressing if needed. Serve the pasta with a mound of arugula on top and sprinkle with toasted nuts.

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