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+ servings

Spring Pasta with Oyster Mushrooms and Chervil

Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 30 mins
Total Time 45 mins
Course Main Course, Main Dish
Servings 2

Ingredients
  

  • 1-1/4 cups pasta The recipe calls for Fregola Sarda Pasta, but I doubt you'll find that in your grocery store. Instead, go with couscous which is very similar but smaller.
  • 3 cloves garlic minced or pressed
  • 1 fennel bulb
  • 1 lemon zested, quartered, and deseeded
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/2 pound oyster mushrooms torn into small pieces
  • 1/2 pound spinach
  • 1 large bunch chervil stems trimmed away
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1/2 cup Pecorino cheese grated
  • 1/8 teaspoon fennel pollen Again, I doubt you'll find this locally. It's used as a garnish in the recipe, so it would be okay to leave out.

Instructions
 

  • Cut off the fennel stems. Halve lengthwise; cut out and discard the core then dice the bulb. (We searched this on YouTube and found a good video on how to prepare fennel.)
  • Cook the pasta according to package directions, reserving 1/2 cup of cooking water. Set aside.
  • While the pasta cooks, heat 2 tablespoons of olive oil on medium-high. Working in batches if necessary, add the spinach. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2-3 minutes, until wilted. Transfer to a strainer; rest strainer over a bowl. Using a spoon, press down on the cooked spinach to release as much liquid as possible. Discard the liquid. Transfer drained spinach to a cutting board; finely chop. Wipe out the pan.
  • While the pasta continues to cook, in the pan used to cook the spinach, heat 2 tablespoons olive oil on medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, 8-10 minutes or until browned and crispy. Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate, leaving any browned bits in the pan. DO NOT WIPE THE PAN.
  • Add 2 teaspoons of olive oil to the same pan, heat on medium-high heat. Add the fennel. Cook, stirring occasionally, 2-4 minutes or until lightly browned and softened. Add the garlic. Cook, stirring frequently, 1-2 additional minutes or until fragrant.
  • To the garlic and fennel, add the cooked pasta, chopped spinach, butter, lemon zest, the juice of all 4 lemon quarters, and half the reserved pasta cooking water.
  • Cook, stirring vigorously, 1-2 minutes or until thoroughly combined. (If the sauce seems dry, gradually add the remaining pasta cooking water to achieve your desired consistency.) Season with salt and pepper to taste.
  • Divide the finished pasta between 2 dishes, top with mushrooms, cheese, chervil, and fennel pollen.
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