Vegetarians can still get a rich, hearty and satisfying bowl of pasta with this bolognese based on two types of delicious mushrooms. Cook up the chunky, veggie-packed sauce then toss it through perfectly al dente pasta for an Italian feast that will make you cry "Bravo!"
Each week, we search the country to source the best ingredients, with a focus on quality and variety. This week's basil was in short supply, so we've replaced it with oregano. Don't worry, the recipe will be just as delicious!
Always refer to the product label for the most accurate ingredient and allergen information.
dried porcini mushrooms
crushed & sieved tomatoes
Bring a kettle of water to the boil. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to the boil. In a heatproof jug or bowl, combine the boiling water from the kettle (3/4 cup for 2 people / 1 1/2 cups for 4 people) and dried porcini mushrooms. Set aside. Thinly slice the button mushrooms (see ingredients list). Pick and finely chop the oregano.
In a large frying pan, heat 1/2 the butter and a drizzle of olive oil over a medium-high heat. When the butter has melted, add the sliced mushrooms and cook, stirring occasionally, until golden and browned, 5-7 minutes. Season with a pinch of salt and pepper. While the mushrooms are cooking, finely chop the brown onion. Finely chop the celery. Finely chop the garlic (or use a garlic press). Grate the carrot (unpeeled). Grate the Parmesan cheese (see ingredients list).
Add the spaghetti to the saucepan of boiling water and cook until ‘al dente’, 9 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving some pasta water (1/2 cup for 2 people / 1 cup for 4 people), then drizzle with olive oil to prevent sticking. Remove the porcini mushrooms, reserving the liquid, and roughly chop.
Add the onion, carrot and celery to the mushrooms and cook until soft, 6 minutes. Add the garlic, oregano and tomato paste and cook until fragrant, 1 minute. Add the crushed & sieved tomatoes (see ingredients list), porcini mushrooms, crumbled vegetable stock (1 cube for 2 people / 2 cubes for 4 people), the salt, brown sugar and a splash of reserved pasta water. Add the porcini liquid. Simmer over a medium heat until thickened, 5 minutes.
While the sauce is simmering, thinly slice the pear. In a large bowl, add the pear, rocket leaves, balsamic vinegar and olive oil (2 tsp for 2 people / 4 tsp for 4 people). Toss to combine. When the bolognese sauce has finished simmering, add the remaining butter to the sauce and season to taste with salt and pepper. Add the spaghetti to the pan and toss to coat. TIP: Loosen with a little more reserved pasta water if needed.
Divide the porcini mushroom spaghetti bolognese between plates. Top with the grated Parmesan cheese. Serve with the rocket and pear salad.