Monday, June 25, 2018

3 Tricks and a Recipe

Does anyone else remember when Lucy and Ethel calculated how many dishes they had washed in their lives? I found myself counting meals I had cooked because I can't believe this never crossed my path! How did I not think of this?

I have to admit that this recipe came from the back of a package of bionaturae linguini. (That's not a typo, they don't capitalize their name.) The recipe is called Linguine Cacio e Pepe with Asparagus which translates to Linguine Cheese and Pepper with Asparagus. A quick search on Google indicates that this is a fairly common recipe with lots of people throwing in white beans, peas, spring vegetables, and in one case salmon. Clearly there are a lot of ways to go with this basic concept. I happened to have asparagus on hand as well as mushrooms, but if you're in the mood to use somthing else, it's worth a try.

Trick #1: This actually cam from my mom. When your mushrooms begin to look a little bit icky, peel them! No, I'm not kidding. I usually rinse them off first. Then take out the stem. Grasp a little bit of the underside of the cap and slowly pull it back. Repeat all the way about the mushroom until you have a nice clean-looking mushroom!


Trick #2: Did you know that you can make a sauce from cheese and the water in which you cooked your pasta? The recipe today recommends grated Pecarino Romano. I used a white cheddar because that was what I had, but it worked great! Add a couple of tablespoons of olive oil and whisk. That's it and the silly thing is that it's delicious.

Trick #3: Are you cooking your veggies in a separate pot? Hah! Cut the asparagus into one inch pieces. Slice the mushrooms. Five minutes before the pasta finishes cooking, add them to the water. Presto, your pasta comes out with the veggies already added.

Linguine Cacio e Pepe with Asparagus and Mushrooms
based on a recipe from bionaturae

1 pound linguine
1 bunch aspagagus
6-8 mushrooms, white or cremini
1 1/2 cups Pecarino Romano
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons coarsely ground black pepper

Follow the directions to cook the linguini. Cut the asparagus into 1-inch bits. Clean (and peel if necessary) the mushrooms, and slice them. Set aside. Pour the grated cheese into a mixing bowl. Five minutes before the pasta should be done, take 1/2 cup of the boiling pasta water and add it to the cheese. Add the mushrooms and asparagus to the pasta. Add the olive oil and pepper to the cheese and whisk until it's creamy. Drain the pasta. Pour the sauce over the pasta and toss.

Buon Appetito!


  1. I love this one pot idea. I've never thought to use the pasta water and make a sauce with the cheese. I will have to try this.

  2. I think my mother used to peel mushrooms (at least she bought them fresh!), but then, she used to peel the little pointy things on asparagus too, which I decided back then was a waste of effort. I do have asparagus in the fridge--now I need to go find mushrooms and cheese! This sounds great.

  3. Really enjoyed the tips you shared and will certainly enjoy the ease with which this recipe comes together. Wonderful for a lazy evening.

  4. Simple and totally delicious looking and sounding. Thanks.

    By the way, you have two typos--
    in the mood to use somthing else
    This actually cam from my mom

  5. This sounds eminently do-able - if I can convince the spousal unit that mushrooms won't kill him.


  6. This is ingenious! Totally! I will give it a shot with what I have laying around. Just bought some crookneck squash.

  7. I never thought before about making a sauce with the water used to make the pasta.