Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Creamy Tomato and Mushroom Pasta

I make this for the hubby. It's his favorite (well, one of them). I've made this for his birthday dinner for 2 years now, ever since I first tried this recipe and he fell in love. If I ask him if there is a specific dish he wants me to make during the week, this is what he asks for. I try to throw it in the rotation every couple of months to keep him happy.

I used to hate it, but it's grown on me.

There's plenty of fresh vegetables in it. Diced tomato, sliced mushrooms, and diced onion.

The recipe calls for bow-tie pasta but I'm not a fan of the bow-tie pasta with this sauce. I usually use penne, but I've made it with rigatoni or ziti occasionally.

The sauce is quite easy, and calls for a half cup of cream and 3 oz of cream cheese. This combination makes the hubby very happy.

My two personal favorites, lots of fresh basil and fresh grated Parm. Fresh basil makes me very happy. One of the things I'm most looking forward to with our new house is planting a garden next year with about 50 basil plants. All right, I'm exaggerating a little bit :)

As with any recipe using fresh onions, I always start by sautéing the onion into mush in a smidge of olive oil. Then it's time to throw in the garlic, mushrooms, tomatoes, salt, and crushed red pepper.


After sautéing the veggies for a good 10 minutes or so, add in the cream, cream cheese, and basil. Stir until the cream cheese melts, and the sauce looks like creamy wonderfulness.

Add the pasta back to the pot and toss to combine. I like to put a layer of grated parm on the pasta and let it melt while I prepare some grilled garlic bread to serve with it.

Whatever leftovers remain at the end of the night are gone the next day, because the hubby hoards the leftovers for lunch. I wouldn't have it any other way :)

8 oz pasta, cooked to package directions
1 tbsp olive oil
1 onion, diced
5 plum tomatoes, diced
5 large mushrooms, sliced
4 garlic cloves, minced
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp crushed red pepper
1/2 cup cream
3 oz cream cheese
1/3 cup fresh basil, chopped
Parmesan cheese (garnish)

1. Heat olive oil in a large pan. Add onion to pan, saute 5-7 minutes or until tender. Add tomatoes through crushed red pepper to the pan. Saute 10 minutes, or until tomatoes start to break down.
2. Add cream, cream cheese, and basil to the pan. Cook, stirring constantly, until cream cheese melts and sauce is smooth.
3. Add pasta to the pan, toss to combine. Garnish with Parmesan cheese, and serve immediately.

Adapted from Southern Living

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