Monday, April 27, 2009

Wild Mushroom Agnolotti with Brown Butter Parsley Sauce

One night last week, Number One and I were up late watching television. We're talking late, late, like 10:00pm! Both of the boys had thankfully fallen asleep, and it was just us. And a trespasser! A car drove down the ranch road, like it knew where it was going. It stopped in front of our old house, as if it had stopped there before. Number One grabbed a flashlight and went out to see what was up.

"FedEx!" yelled Tom, our dutiful FedEx Express driver. He told Number One about his FedEx truck breaking down, so he had to rent a little car. He wasn't too happy about it, but man oh man is he dedicated. You may recall how much we hate FedEx, but Tom is an exception to the rule. Tom handed Number One a box we had not been expecting, and was on his way.

In the box, with some ice packs and styrofoam, was a little present. A package of Buitoni Riserva Wild Mushroom Agnolotti, from my friends at! How surprising! How wonderful! Thank you, foodbuzz!

It took me a while to decide how to serve it up, but tonight I did. Not only does the fresh pasta cook fast (4 to 6 minutes!), it is "generously filled with fresh portobello and crimini mushrooms, imported Grana Padano & Parmesan cheeses and fresh roasted garlic." I served the agnolotti (similar to ravioli, but shaped differently) with Giada De Laurentiis' Brown Butter Sauce, from her Everyday Italian cookbook. I used Italian flat parsley in my dish instead of the sage or basil she suggested.

If I could say delicious in Italian, this would certainly be the occasion! The sauce complemented the savory pasta beautifully, with crispy parsley leaves and a sprinkling of Parmesan on top. The pasta smells divine, and is so tasty, bursting with flavorful mushrooms. We all loved it, and H-Bomb asked for seconds, of sauce too!

So if you can find this pasta in your local store, or in any store to which you're willing to drive (go here for the store locator), and buy some now. Buy two 9-ounce packages if you have more than two people to serve, and whip up this lovely Brown Butter Sauce. If you love mushrooms, you'll love it too.

Brown Butter Sauce
This is the easiest sauce you will ever make and a very tasty one, but then what doesn't taste good when it's drenched in butter? This is the perfect topping for stuffed pastas like ravioli, tortellini, and agnolotti.

Makes 1/ cup, serves 4 with a pound of pasta as a first course

1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter
6 fresh sage leaves (torn into pieces) or 1/4 cup fresh basil leaves or 1/4 cup fresh flat parsley leaves
1/2 teaspoon salt, plus more to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/3 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In a large, heavy frying pan, melt the butter over medium-high heat until pale golden about 4 minutes. Add the sage, basil or parsley and cook until crisp, about 2 minutes. Stir in 1/2 teaspoon of salt, 1/4 teaspoon of pepper, and the nutmeg. Season the sauce with more salt and pepper to taste (I didn't need any more of either). Sprinkle with the Parmesan cheese, and serve.

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