Sarah’s Porcini Winter Stew

My entry for the competition (sorry about the photo – it was so dark!). Porcini mushrooms mingle with fresh sage, butternut squash and beans in a warming winter stew. Serve with crusty bread!


2 to 2 1/2 oz. dried porcini mushrooms or even better 2 fresh porcini

3 cups very hot water (if using dried porcini)
1 tbs. olive oil
2 onions, finely chopped
2 small chilies, seeded and minced
2 carrots finely grated
2 sticks celery finely chopped
2 tins tomatoes or 1lb fresh tomatoes
2 tsp. minced fresh sage
2 tbsp tomato paste
1 lb. butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
salt and freshly ground pepper
1 can cannellini beans
1 can Ceci or chick pea
3 cups vegetable or chicken broth
Chopped fresh parsley for sprinkling


1. If using dried porcini, place in a sieve and rinse briefly with cold water. Place into a bowl and add the very hot water. Let them soak until the mushrooms are softened, about 20 minutes.

2. In a large, heavy pan, over medium-high heat, warm the olive oil. Add the onions, chilies and sage and sauté until the onions are tender, about 8 minutes.

3. Add the squash, carrot and celery and season with salt and pepper. sauté until everything starts to soften, about 5 minutes.

4. Add the cannellini beans, the ceci, tomato paste and the broth.

5. Set a fine-mesh sieve over a small bowl. Drain the porcini in the sieve, pressing out as much liquid as possible from the mushrooms.

6. Add the liquid to the pan.

7. Chop the porcini (fresh or dried) and add to the pot.

8. Simmer until the squash is tender and the flavors blend, about 20 minutes. Taste and adjust the seasonings with salt and pepper.

8. Ladle the stew into warmed bowls. Sprinkle with parsley and serve immediately with crusty bread.

Serves 6 to 8

For a heartier meal with extra protein, add sausage slices, chopped pancetta, a ham hock or diced smoked turkey. If using a ham hock, simmer it whole in the stew, then remove the meat from the bone, chop it and stir the chopped meat back into the stew. If you like, rosemary could replace the sage.

Adapted from Williams-Sonoma Weeknight Fresh & Fast, by Kristine Kidd

Kim’s Porcini Egg & Grilled tops.

Simple clean and chop the porcini keep the tops for grilling. toss the chopped porcini in the pan with butter, oil, garlic, white wine, salt and pepper. Throw in the nipitella or thyme. Cook in another pan 2 eggs mixed with 1/3 tsp of baking powder make a thin omelet fill with the mushroom mix and top. Grill the tops on a grill with some olive oil. serve some sour cream with chives on the side.

Tina’s Porcini and salsiccia empanadas.

For the dough, assembly and baking instructions follow my recipe:

For the filling:
About 2 cups of porcini, sliced
1 large onion

salsiccia (cut into small bits) (as much or as little as you’d like – it depends on how dominant you would like the porcini to be vs. the sausage)
salt and pepper to taste
OPTIONAL: mozzarella

Sauté it all together until everything is cooked through

When assembling the empanadas, you may add a small piece of fresh mozzarella before closing the empanadas. Bake 25 minutes at 180C or until golden brown. Enjoy! 🙂

Note: I have NEVER used my empanadas recipe as a submission before and I thought that porcini were the perfect ingredient with which to do so.

Mary’s Potstickers Italian Style with Condimento Balsamico and Crisp Fried Sage

Filling –
1 1/2 cups chopped fresh porcini
1/3 cup finely minced pancetta affumicata

1/4 cup grated barilotto di bufala or ricotta salata
1 cup finely chopped radicchio
1 med carrot grated
1 large shallot minced
1 large clove garlic minced
1 Tbsp Italian parsley finely chopped
1 tsp minced fresh sage
Whole sage leaves
Salt and pepper to taste
Olive oil

Mix all of the ingredients together except for the oil and sage leaves and set aside. Crisp fry the sage leaves in olive oil and butter and lightly salt.

Potsticker dough
2 cups 0 or all purpose flour
3/4 cup boiling water

Very slowly pour the boiling water into the flour and mix thoroughly with a dough hook or spoon until you have a soft dough. Add water or flour to the mixture to get a dough that is tacky but not sticky. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured board and knead lightly for about 30 seconds. Again, add flour or water to get the correct consistency. Set the dough aside covered in plastic wrap at room temperature for 30 minutes to 2 hours.

Remove the dough from the plastic and cut in half leaving half in the plastic wrap. Roll the other half into a log and cut into 8 pieces. Roll each piece into a ball. If you have a tortilla press, press each ball into a round using light pressure. Remove from the press and thin out the edges only. If using a rolling pin, roll the dough into rounds with the inner round thicker than the outer part.

Fill each dough round with a scant tablespoon of filling and press the edges together with the bottom flattened and the sealed edges on top.

When all of the potstickers have been assembled, heat a non-stick 10 or 12 inch frying pan over medium heat. Add 2 Tbsp of olive oil to the heated pan and add the potsticker one at a time in a round. Cook lightly until the bottoms are golden. Take a pan lid to protect you from spatter, and pour enough water into the bottom of the pan to a level of about 1/4″. Cook covered over medium low heat for about 6-7 minutes. Remove the lid and allow the potstickers to continue cooking for another 3-4 minutes until the water is completely evaporated.

Serve while hot with a splash of Condimento Balsamico and crisp fried sage leaves.

Amber’s Tagliatelle with Porcini and Sausage

500 grams of fresh porcini
1-2 sausage links
½ to 1 glass of dry white wine (1-2 spins around the pan, really)
1 large or 2 small cloves of garlic

Handful of fresh chopped parsley
peperoncino to taste
2 sprigs of Nepitella (optional)
2 handfuls of grated parmigiano
Olive Oil Q.B.
Water/Brodo Q.B.
Fresh Tagliatelle (to feed 5 people, I did 400 grams of flour/four eggs)
Clean mushrooms. Chop to desired size. I usually chop the stems finer than the caps. Set aside.
Add olive oil to pan deep enough to add cooked pasta to. Add garlic and let it go for a minute over medium heat, but don’t let it get too brown! Add mushrooms. Let them cook over medium for a minute or two. Add wine. Turn heat up until alcohol burns off. Turn down heat, add salt and pepper, cover and let mushrooms cook through. If pan starts to dry out, add water. (You can do this with brodo/broth too.) These mushrooms aren’t as water logged as champignon, so watch carefully. Take the sausage out of its casing and cook in a separate pan. When cooked through, drain fat. Set aside (You can do this in the same pan before you add garlic, if you’d like, but we don’t like the extra grease.) When mushrooms are cooked through add sausage and handfuls of parsley. Combine and set aside.
N.B. If you’re using the nepitella, you can add it towards the end. It’s really strong, don’t add too much.
Cook pasta according to directions or taste in salted water.
After you’ve boiled the pasta, add the pasta directly to the pan of mushrooms. Set aside some of the pasta cooking liquid. Mix mushrooms and pasta together to fully coat the pasta over a low heat adding only enough water as necessary. As soon as the pasta is completely coated, turn off heat and add parmigiano. Mix through. EAT!

Louie’s Chestnut Pasta With Creamy Porcini Mushroom Sauce

Chestnuts and mushrooms are a great combination for this fall pasta dish.


For The Chestnut Pasta:
200 Grams (7 Ounces) Chestnut Flour
300 Grams (10.5 Ounces) All-Purpose Flour (Plus Additional For Kneading & Rolling)
5 Large Eggs
1/2 Teaspoon Salt
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
For The Sauce:
10 Ounces Fresh Mushrooms, Cleaned And Chopped (See Note Above)
1 Ounce Dried Porcini (If Not Using Fresh or Frozen Porcini Above)
1/2 Cup Peeled, Chopped Chestnuts (Frozen or Canned)
2 Tablespoons Olive Oil
2 Cloves Garlic, Peeled And Minced
1/2 Cup Dry White Wine
1 1/4 Cups Heavy Cream
1/4 Cup Fresh, Chopped Parsley
Cracked Black Pepper & Sea Salt


To make the pasta, place the flours and salt in a mound and create a well in the center.
Add the oil, and begin to break the eggs into the well using a fork to mix the eggs into the flour.
Continue to mix the eggs and flour until the mixture comes together as a dough.
Begin to knead the dough with your hands adding a little additional all-purpose flour if needed to prevent sticking.
Knead for about 4 to 5 minutes or until your dough is smooth.
Wrap in plastic wrap and let rest for 30 minutes.
Using a pasta roller, break off about one third of the dough and after dusting it with flour begin to pass it through the widest setting.
Continue to dust with flour and pass through the rollers, decreasing the width (increasing the numbers) until number 4 or 5 on your pasta machine.
At this point you can either cut it by hand, or use an attachment for your pasta machine.
Lightly dust the cut pasta and let it rest on clean towels until needed.
For the sauce, if you are not using fresh or frozen porcini, re-hydrate your dried porcini in warm water until soft, about 15 minutes. Drain and chop the mushrooms finely.
Heat the oil in a heavy saucepan and add the fresh chopped mushrooms and chestnuts and cook over medium heat until soft and lightly browned, about 10 minutes.
Add the re-hydrated mushrooms at this point if using them as well as the garlic.
Cook an additional couple of minutes.
Add the wine and cook until it has almost completely evaporated and then add the cream.
Reduce the heat to a simmer and cook until thickened.
Season with salt and pepper.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil, and cook the pasta until it is “al dente“.
The cooking time will depend on how long the pasta was left to rest, but fresh pasta generally only takes a few minutes to cook.
Drain the pasta retaining a little cup of pasta water.
Add half the sauce to the pasta in the pot with half the fresh parsley, and toss to coat the pasta well adding a little of the pasta water if the sauce seems too thick.
Serve the pasta in individual bowl with an additional scoop of the sauce and a sprinkle of chopped parsley on each.