The grocery I usually visit just started renovations to catch-up to the ever increasing and growing supermarket competition. It was about time. The aisles were adjusted to accommodate more shoppers and additional shelves, freezers, and fridge displays were installed in the premises. Now, that’s a plus for a choosy (cheap) shopper like me! The store’s overall shopping experience has been stuck in the 80’s, 70’s even; dark, narrow aisles with nearly empty shelves and very limited choices. There’s another grocer just across my apartment; selling just the necessary and basic stuff, but with the quality and kind of food I look for, it definitely doesn’t make the grade. I go there just for emergencies; things I might have left out during my dedicated afternoon in the grocery, and for bottled water. Moreover, service at the front moves at snail’s pace. I don’t have that luxury nor the patience to wait on long queues. I’ll take my business somewhere else if that’s the case.
The vegetable and fruit counters were replenished with fresher and more vibrant looking colours of the sun and the rainbow which just makes you want to buy more just for nothing else. The grocery also carries a variety of fresh mushrooms which I really love to have whenever I come there. They are also sold by the pound which is more favourable for me knowing that I can’t finish a package of just one kind in a couple of days or so. I can pick-up several of each and cook each one differently from the other. Anyway I took three kinds and while proceeding home, thought of a recipe I do miss.
I’ve always wanted to cook a Spaghetti & Mushroom combination dish without using heavy cream, milk and eggs or making a more potent Bechamel Sauce as commonly practiced and used in many Italian-American recipes. If it were Carbonara, I would indeed load it up since there’s already bacon and bacon fat pan-fried prior to cooking, which by themselves already pack a punch to the belly. I’ve also seen many pouring heavy cream directly into the sauté pan when making this one. I feel that would be too heavy to the bite for just pasta and mushrooms. I came up with this one as a result.
• Olive Oil
• 1/3 of a box of Spaghetti
• Assorted Mushrooms (White Button, Cremini, Oyster)
• 2% Evaporated Milk (Condensed)
• 2 Cloves of Garlic, minced
• Cheese: Parmesan/Mozzarella/Cheddar
• Compound Butter (Garlic, Wine, Onion Powder)
• Salt & Ground Black Pepper
• A Squeeze of Lemon
Optional: Fresh Chopped Italian Parsley/White Wine
Start a pot of heavily salted water and drop the Spaghetti. Follow the instructions indicated on the package for the required time.
Start chopping the mushrooms and mincing the garlic while waiting for the Spaghetti to reach desired doneness.
Heat the sauté pan with Olive oil and butter and stir-fry the garlic until aromatic. Slowly add the mushrooms and toss until cooked. Add some of the pasta water followed by the Spaghetti when done. Stir some more until everything comes together, and pour in the condensed milk until the desired creaminess is reached. Start adding the Mozzarella or Parmesan Cheese, and squeeze some lemon juice to give it a final shine.
Plate and garnish with chopped Italian Parsley and drizzle with Olive oil before serving.
I used chopped green onions as garnish. White wine can be added after sauteing the onion and garlic.
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