Wednesday, 24 October 2007

Sugo con Fungi Porcini

Well, I have to start the recipe ball rolling with what is probably the classic of all the Italian sauces. Some people may think that it's tomato but I think that it's the porcini sauce. However, this one combines porcini and tomatoes so you get the best of both worlds.

1 Onion diced finely
1 clove of garlic
1 handful of dried mushrooms
2 to 3 tablespoons of tomato puree
1 glass of white wine
Stock cube

To Make the Sauce:

  1. First you will need to soak the dried mushrooms in about 300ml of boiling water. This needs not be too precise. A bit more or less is hardly crucial. Set aside for about 20 mins by which time the mushrooms will have plumped up. Strain but keep the soaking liquid as you will need it for the sauce. If any dusty bits remain in the bottom of the soaking dish then throw them away.
  2. Chop the drained mushrooms into medium size pieces. No need to make them too small as you want to see that you are eating a mushroom sauce after all.
  3. Now fry the onion and the garlic slowly in oil until they soften and turn a golden colour. This should take about twenty minutes. you will give the sauce a good depth of flavour if you do it this way.
  4. Turn up the heat and add the chopped mushrooms. Fry for about 2 minutes and then add the white wine. Bubble up until the alcohol has boiled off and then add the mushroom soaking liquid.
  5. Now add the tomato puree and turn the heat down to a very gently simmer.
  6. Do not cover. The pan should be about 2/3rds full. This will evaporate as it cooks. Allow to simmer gently for about 2 hours, checking from time to time that it is not drying out.
  7. Taste and season with the stock cube and salt if necessary.
  8. Use this sauce with freshly cooked pasta and sprinkle generously with freshly grated parmesan.

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