Seasoned shiitakes, sweet pumpkin and tangy gorgonzola make for a luxuriously complex pasta topping. A variety of mushrooms, gourds and soft cheeses can be substituted, so experiment with this recipe to find your perfect pasta. This recipe comes to us from our friends at myrecipes.com.
- 1 pound uncooked pennette (small penne)
- 1 tablespoon olive oil
- 5 cups thinly sliced shiitake mushroom caps (3/4 pound)
- 4 cups onion, vertically sliced
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- 1 teaspoon fresh sage, chopped
- 1 (12-ounce) can evaporated milk
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cold water
- 1/2 cup (2 ounces) Gorgonzola cheese, crumbled
- 1/2 cup canned pumpkin puree or roasted pumpkin puree*
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 1/8 teaspoon grated whole nutmeg
- Fresh sage sprigs, for garnish**
*please note that canned pumpkin is not the same as canned pumpkin pie filling, which should not be substituted. To make your own pumpkin puree, cut a pumpkin in half, scoop out the seeds and roast, cut side down, in a 400 degree oven for 50-60 minutes, or until pumpkin flesh is soft when poked as a fork. For the smoothest consistency, puree the roasted pumpkin pulp in a food processor or blender.
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Keep warm.
Heat oil in a Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add mushrooms, onion, and garlic. Cover and cook for 3 minutes. Uncover and for another cook 5 minutes, or until veggies are tender, stirring occasionally.
In a medium saucepan over medium heat, combine chopped sage and milk. Bring to a simmer.
Combine cornstarch and water, stirring with a whisk. Add cornstarch mixture and cheese to milk sage mixture. Cook 2 minutes or until thick and smooth, stirring constantly with a whisk. Remove from heat and stir in pumpkin, salt, pepper and nutmeg.
Add pasta and pumpkin mixture to mushroom mixture and toss well to combine. Garnish with fresh sage sprigs, if desired.