It is of note that although I do a good job cooking with recipes, I am incapable of producing food without a recipe. So sometimes the recipes I use are so simplistic and it just seems silly that I've even required a recipe, but the sad fact is that I always do. I may not physically use the recipe again the next time I make this dish, but I will always know that I did not come up with it on my own. :)
The pasta dish I made for dinner tonight comes from Everyday Food's June 2005 issue. I was drawn to it because it was in a section called "Cooking for One." I'm having issues trying to learn to cook for only myself, without hundreds of days worth of leftovers, so this seemed good. Plus it is quick and simple for a weeknight dinner.
It was very good! I liked how quickly it came together, and it was tasty. Not the most complex dish, but still very yummy. I would make this again, and could easily vary the types of mushrooms and cheeses to whatever I have on hand. I also think it might be nice with a little mascarpone or cream cheese melted in to make it creamy. Yum yum.
My changes: I used baby portobello mushrooms instead of shiitake, and I added about 1/4 cup of frozen peas as well. I also used shaved Pecorino Romano cheese instead of grated Parmesan.
Tortellini with Mushroom Sauce
1 1/4 cups frozen cheese tortellini (1/2 of a 16-oz bag)
8 oz fresh shiitake mushrooms, stemmed, caps halved and thinly sliced
3 tbsp grated Parmesan cheese
2 garlic cloves, sliced
1 Tbsp cold butter
2 tsp olive oil
Ground pepper and coarse salt
1/3 cup chopped fresh flat-leaf parsley
1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook tortellini according to package instructions; drain.
2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat oil over medium-low heat. Add mushrooms and garlic; cook, stirring frequently, until mushrooms are tender, about 7 minutes.
3. Add 1 cup water; season with salt and pepper. Cook until liquid is reduced by half, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat; add tortellini, Parmesan, butter, and parsley. Toss to coat; serve.
Note: If you find fresh tortellini, you can use that instead of frozen; cook in a pot of boiling salted water until the pasta floats to the top, about 3 minutes.
Yield: 1 serving
This is what it looks like if you make it with peas instead of mushrooms (which is very tasty):
Photo added 10/9/2008