This pasta was so easy to make that it was ready before I even had time to make a side green salad. Put the pasta on to boil while you mix up the sauce, toss the two together and keep warm over low heat while you prepare your green veggies and you're ready for dinner in no time!
serves two for dinner plus a lunch leftover
5-6 ounces (1/2 package) your pasta - I used large shells, but farfalle and fettucine would also both be good.
1 tablespoon butter
1/2 shallot, minced
1 large or 2 small cloves garlic, minced
6 large baby portabella mushrooms, chopped (or sliced if you prefer)
1/2 cup tomato juice (I had this leftover from what I drained off a can of whole tomatoes - otherwise, use unflavored tomato sauce)
1-2 tablespoons marsala wine (or other cooking wine)
1-2 tablespoons cream (optional)
1/2 fresh parsley, chopped
Melt the butter in a 10-inch cast iron skillet over medium low heat. Add the shallots and garlic, and saute until just tender (about 2 minutes). Stir in the mushrooms and tomato sauce, plus season with a bit of salt. Cook until tender and sauce starts to thicken (3-4 minutes). Deglaze with a bit of wine, and stir in cream if desired. Toss with pasta and parsley and keep warm until ready to serve.
A note about the cream: My preference would be not to use cream in this recipe, but whenever Will really likes something I make, he says "You finally used enough fat to make it taste good." He has a psychological taste barrier that he can not cross until he's observed a certain threshold of butter and cream being incorporated to a dish. Apparently, olive oil is not a substitute. He watched me pour this in, and gave it a thumb's up. I agree it does give the finished sauce a very thick, appealing texture.