Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Pasta with Wild Mushrooms

Since I can remember, I went on a mushroom foray with my grandmother almost every summer. I remember getting up really early, we left when the grass was still wet. We packed something for lunch, and she carried the basket. I remember running around in the wood, bringing the mushrooms to my grandmother to ask if they were edible, and more important, delicious. We walked around for hours, with our eyes scanning the ground. We then went back to the camper, cleaned all the mushrooms and she made mushroom toast for us. She used to toast the bread in a pan with some butter, then we spooned a mushroom ragout, made with more butter, onion and white wine, on top. I loved it, and I still do.

My grandmother is older now. We still do this once a year, although I'm sure I missed some summers I now don't remember. We start not until about 10 in the morning, and we are back after about 2 hours. But I still love these moments with my grandmother.

This year I met her a week ago, we spent 3 hours in the wood and came back with about 6 mushrooms. The weather was too dry for the mushrooms. I plan on going again in a week or so, but until then I had to rely on my supermarket to provide my wild mushrooms.

I picked up all varieties of wild mushrooms they had in my supermarket, I'm sure not all of them are available all over the world. You can use a mixture of probably most mushrooms you can find in a supermarket. There are edible mushrooms that have to be blanched before you can prepare them the way you want, but I don't think they are sold in supermarkets. If you are not sure, check it out on Google, I'm in no way a mushroom expert.

Pasta with Wild Mushrooms

250g dry pasta
100-150g wild mushrooms, a mix is best
~2 tablespoons butter
parsley and tarragon, only a few leaves
salt and pepper

First you have to clean the mushroom, even when you buy them in the supermarket they still have dirt on them. It's best to use a brush to remove the soil. You should also cut off the dry end of the stem. Discard of any mushrooms that are watery and have a slimy texture. Cut the chanterelles or any other mushroom with a firmer flesh in slices and leave the others whole, like I did with the Funnel Chanterelle and the Black Trumpets.
Heat the butter in a non-stick pan, on low-medium heat. Add in the mushrooms when the butter is melted.
Heat water for the pasta and cook according to instructions.
Season the mushrooms with salt and pepper, add the pasta after draining. Add in the parsley. Chop up the tarragon and add it in the end or sprinkle over the pasta on your plate if you are not too sure about the flavor.

Serves 2-3.


  1. This looks and sounds delicious! The story about your grandma is amazing, I have never been brave enough to eat a mushroom I picked even if I am certain it is edible. I am too scared haha. Pasta and mushrooms are one of my favorite combos- especially trumpet mushrooms!

  2. Thanks for your nice comment. I might be too scared too, if I had not started doing it when I was a child.

  3. I've never been foraging for mushrooms...as with the comment above, I'm just too scared I might have picked up something lethal by mistake! Pasta with mushrooms is delicious though...I like the idea of using tarragon, and would probably sprinkle a little parmesan on mine too :-) yum.