I am honored to be chosen as a blog ambassador by La Cucina Italiana magazine. They sent me some wonderful Delverde™ pasta products to use as inspiration to create a recipe using the pasta, and to enter a contest sponsored by both Delverde™ and La Cucina Italiana magazine.
I was particularly thrilled when my package arrived because I discovered that Delverde™ pasta is made in the Abruzzo region, where my great grandfather Carlo Passarelli is from (a little town called Alfedena).
My cooking is very much a product of my Italian-American upbringing in the Midwest and influenced by my cooking experience in Tuscany at Toscana Saporita cooking school. Oh, how I long to travel to the Abruzzo to learn the authentic cooking of that area, where my family has ancestral roots. Maybe I even still have some distant relatives there?! Some day I’ll find out.
This simple, but flavorful dish, spinach tagliatelle with mushroom marsala sauce, was inspired by the season and Delverde™ Spinach pasta nests. Delverde pasta is made with the best durum wheat semolina that is harvested from their fields in the Central Apennines of Abruzzo.
I wanted something light with this pasta so I could really taste the quality of the pasta and the flavor of the spinach in the tagliatelle. Italian cooking is all about the flavors of the season. Just a few quality ingredients can make the most tasty dish.
This recipe only has a few components. I had a mix of mushrooms that I marinated in Marsala wine and my own blend of Italian seasoning. Then I cooked them lightly in Marsala, homemade vegetable stock, Lucini® Extra Virgin Olive Oil, balsamic vinegar, then topped the Delverde spinach tagliatelle nests with the mushroom marsala sauce mixture.
Prep time: Approximately 25 minutes
2 Spinach nests serves 2 people (1/2 the package)
- 2 cups mixed mushrooms marinated
- 1/2-3/4 cup sweet Marsala wine
- 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 teaspoon of dried Italian Seasonings
- 1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar, preferably from Modena
- Fresh basil sprigs
- Grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese
- A few tablespoons of reserved pasta water, if needed
In a small bowl, combine mushrooms with 1/2-3/4 cup of Marsala wine (I used Pellegrino), and 1 tsp. of dried Italian Seasoning (I used my own blend of Italian herbs and spices including basil, oregano, garlic, and red pepper flakes to name a few). Set aside for 15 minutes to marinate.
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil.
Heat a medium sauce pan or skillet. When hot, add olive oil, mushroom mixture, and balsamic. Cook gently until mushrooms are tender and heated through, approximately 5 minutes.
While mushroom mixture is cooking, add Delverde spinach pasta nests to boiling water. Boil gently just until tagliatelle is al dente, about 3-5 minutes. Reserve a few tablespoons of pasta water.
Drain pasta and taste the mushroom mixture. If it needs thinning, add a teaspoon at a time of the reserved pasta water until it’s the consistency and flavor you desire.
Divide pasta evenly among 2 warm plates.
Top pasta with a few spoonfuls of the mushroom marsala sauce mixture.
Sprinkle with grated parmigiano-reggiano cheese and fresh basil. Serve immediately. Pairs nicely with crusty bread and roasted, seasonal vegetables.