Hello Monday, thank you for my wonderful and peaceful weekend. Hurry up Friday and come back.
My husband asked me for a small favor for any dinners that I was making...to lay off the pasta and Italian. It was a hard favor to comply, but ever since our return from Italy this past May - I have had an influx of Italian-themed meals. Thin-crust pizza, gelato, pasta, foccacia sandwiches and so much more. It gave me a break away from the indulgent Italian foods, but a recent dinner with girlfriends had inspired this dish.
My girlfriend had moved away and one of her favorite restaurants in her hometown was Romeo Cucina. She had plenty of dinners at this wonderful establishment, and we celebrated her birthday there enjoying a nice selection of pizza, pasta and carpaccio. Her favorite dish that she orders is this Rigatoni Giulietta, that is made with short tube pasta, chopped mushrooms, spinach, pine-nuts and onions, with fresh tomato & mascarpone sauce. I took one bite and fell in love with it's creamy wonderfulness.
It's an easy dish to prepare and the caramelized onions really add the sweetness and rich flavor to the sauce. Then you add a couple fresh ingredients tossed in with the pasta and you have one fantastic pasta meal.Enjoy!
Pasta GiuliettaInspired from Romeo Cucina
2 cups onion, thinly sliced (about 1 to 2 medium onions)
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 to 3 garlic cloves, minced
½ cup fresh tomatoes, diced
8 ounces button mushrooms, sliced
¼ cup mascarpone cheese
2 to 3 ounces heavy cream
2 tablespoons parmigiano reggiano cheese, grated
⅓ cup pine nuts
2 cups farfelle (bow-tie) pasta
2 tablespoon fresh basil leaves, chiffonade
Salt & pepper
In a large dutch oven over medium low heat, add the butter and onions. Add a couple pinches of salt, and let onions cook until they slightly brown and caramelize. It will take about 15 to 20 minutes, keep stirring and add a touch of olive oil if onions stick to the pan.
Cook your pasta according to the directions of the package, so it will be ready to add when sauce is done.
When the onions have caramelized, add the garlic and let cook for a minute. Add the mushrooms, heavy cream and mascarpone cheese. Keep stirring to combine it together until it forms a sauce. Add the tomatoes and pine nuts and stir to combine.
Fold in the pasta to the sauce and stir to combine. Taste for seasonings, add salt and pepper if needed. Add the parmigiano cheese and stir to combine. Serve pasta immediately and garnish with fresh basil leaves. Add extra parmigiano cheese to tops of pasta if desired.
Yield: 4 hefty servings (about 1 ½ cups each)
Review: Simply fantastic, and you can easily add grilled chicken or Italian sausages for some protein in the dish if you're not a fan of Meatless Mondays. I suggest you try this dish as is and savor in the richness of the caramelized onions, fresh mushrooms, nutty pine nuts and fresh tomatoes - the flavors meld perfectly together and never overpower each other.