This pasta recipe is all about the umami. That fifth flavor that is a bit salty and a bit sour, and mostly is simply umami. There’s no other way to describe it. This recipe combines pasta with mushrooms, sautéed in vegetable oil, along with a miso-based sauce. The miso is mixed with butter, which greatly refines the strong miso flavors. The result is a delicious miso mushroom pasta, simple to make, special, and one that you just can’t stop eating.
Miso is a seasoning paste that comes from Japanese cuisine. It is (mostly) based on soybeans that are fermented together with koji mushrooms. In Japanese cuisine miso is very common and is used for seasoning almost any type of dish. There are many types of miso, but you can roughly divide them into two – the light miso and the dark miso. The light miso (white / yellow) ferments less time than the dark (red), and therefor less salty. In today’s recipe I use dark miso.
How to make this miso mushroom pasta?
The first step is mixing butter with miso. The butter should be soft (but not liquid), so you should take the butter out of the fridge before starting to prepare the recipe. If it is hot outside – a few minutes will do. However, in the winter, take out the butter about half an hour before start. Beat the butter with the miso until a smooth, uniform mixture is obtained. Set aside.
The next step for the miso mushroom pasta is to sauté the mushrooms. I used portabella mushrooms and shimji. You can use any type of mushrooms that are suitable for sautéing, including button mushrooms. Roughly slice the mushrooms. Grease a wide pan with some vegetable oil (neutral in flavors). Than, sauté the mushrooms for a few minutes while stirring. After a few minutes, add about 3 cloves of crushed garlic and continue to cook for another minute, just until you start to smell the garlic. Transfer the mushrooms from the pan to a separate plate.
Cooking the pasta –
Now you can start cooking the pasta. An important pasta rule is that pasta should be transferred immediately after cooking into an already ready sauce. Pasta can’t wait for the sauce, because it almost certainly will leave us with overcooked pasta. In the recipe I use dry pasta. You can use any type of pasta, just pay attention to the cooking time which varies depending on the type of pasta. Cook the pasta one minute less than the cooking time recommended by the manufacturer. That is because the pasta will continue to be cooked in the sauce for another minute.
The last part of preparing the sauce should take only 3-4 minutes. Time to start cooking the pasta accordingly. You can definitely start the next step about 5 minutes before the end of the pasta’s cooking time, and if you have to wait for the pasta to be ready – lower the flame to minimum heat and wait.
Transfer the miso and butter mixture to the same wide pan in which we sautéed the mushrooms. Add one cup of the pasta’s cooking water to the miso mixture. Mix until a smooth, uniform sauce is obtained. Bring the sauce to a boil and add the mushrooms we sautéed and kept aside. Lower the heat and wait until the cooking time of the pasta is over. Add the cooked pasta into the sauce, stir and continue to cook for another minute. Turn off the heat, stir in chopped green onions and serve immediately.
Looking for more great recipes?
- Wild Rice with Red Cabbage
- Lentils and Roasted Beets Salad
- Sautéed Green Beans with Mushrooms
- Vegan Cherry Crumb Bars
Miso Mushroom Pasta
- 250 gr/ 9-oz dry pasta
- 2 tablespoons red miso paste
- 3 tablespoons soft butter (40 gr / 1½-oz), regular or vegan
- 2 tablespoon vegetable oil (eg canola, grape seeds)
- 400 gr / 13-oz mushrooms , clean and coarsely chopped. use any kind of mushroom suitable for sautéing (button, portabella, shimji, carmine etc.)
- 3 cloves garlic, chopped
- ½ teaspoon black pepper
- pinch of salt
- 2-3 springs of green onions, chopped
- for cooking the pasta – a pot with plenty of boiling and well-salted water
- Place the miso paste and soft butter in a small mixing bowl. Whisk the miso and butter together until a uniform paste is obtained. Keep aside.
- Heat a wide skillet with vegetable oil. Add the chopped mushrooms, a pinch of salt and a teaspoon of black pepper, and sauté while stirring for 2-3 minutes. Add the crushed garlic and continue sautéing, while stirring, for another minute and no more. Transfer the prepared mushrooms to a separate plate and set aside.
- Cook the pasta in a pot with plenty of boiling and well-salted water (at least one teaspoon of salt). The cooking time depends on the pasta you have chosen to use, but in any case the pasta should be cooked one minute less than the cooking time recommended by the manufacturer. Start preparing the next step 5 minutes before the end of the pasta's cooking time.
- Heat a wide pan, the same pan in which we made the mushrooms. Place in it the miso and butter mixture and add one cup of the pasta's cooking water. Mix well until a uniform mixture is obtained and bring to a boil. Add the sautéed mushrooms that we kept aside and mix. If you have to wait until the pasta is ready – then lower to minimum heat and wait until the pasta is done cooking.
- Strain the cooked pasta and transfer it to the prepared miso and mushrooms sauce. Mix well so that all the pasta is covered in the sauce and continue to cook for another 1 minute. Turn off the heat and add chopped green onions. Serve immediately. Enjoy!
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