Pasta with Tomatoes, Mushrooms, and Creamy Herb Sauce

 I could eat pasta 5 nights a week. Maybe 6… And angel hair is one of my favorites. I love fresh angel hair tossed simply with butter and parmagiano, but this sauce is divine. I used with fresh tomatoes from a local farmer (my own tomato patch had succumbed to the bugs and other varmints), fresh herbs from my herb bed outside my kitchen door, raw milk, and Plugra butter. If you have great ingredients, you don’t have to do much with them.

Below the photo tutorial, you’ll find a simple list of the ingredients, as well as an “alternative” list in case you can’t find exactly what I used.

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IN a large pot, bring water to boil to cook 1 lb. of pasta (I used angel hair).

Put 2 tablespoons butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. While butter is melting, roughly chop 4 fresh tomatoes. Add the tomatoes to the saute pan and stir gently.

img_5731.JPG Add 16 oz. sliced mushrooms (portabella or button) to the tomatoes in the saute pan. Sprinkle well with salt and pepper. Stir gently until mushrooms are tender and tomatoes are melting, about 5 minutes.

img_5737.JPG When the pasta is al dente, remove from the heat and drain.

Finely chop one good handful of parsley and one good handful of basil. (You can substitute 1 teaspoon each of dried, but the flavor will not be the same.)

img_5740.JPG Add the minced herbs to the tomato-mushroom mixture in the saute pan. Decrease the heat to low and let the whole thing bubble away for a few minutes.

img_5743.JPG  Pour in 1 1/2 cups whole milk or half-and-half and drop in 1 tablespoon of best-quality butter. Stir gently until the butter is melted. Remove from heat.

Dish the pasta into individual bowls, and top with a generous helping of the tomato-mushroom-herb sauce and shaved asiago or parmagiano cheese. Serve immediately.

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Ingredients (best):

  • 3 tablespoons Plugra or other European butter, divided
  • 1 lb. angel hair
  • 4 fresh tomatoes
  • 16 oz. portabella mushrooms
  • Fresh parsley (a good handful)
  • Fresh basil (a good handful)
  • 1 1/2 cups whole milk or half-and-half
  • Asiago or Parmagiano cheese

Ingredients (alternative):

  • 3 tablespoons butter or olive oil
  • 1 lb. pasta (spaghetti, fettuccine, penne, bowties)
  • 24 oz. canned tomatoes
  • 16 oz. button mushrooms or 2 small cans of mushroom pieces
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried parsley
  • 1 1/2 cups milk (any kind)
  • Shredded cheese

Recipe and Photos by Annie Mueller