Last Thursday my friend Su and I wanted to get together for dinner and perhaps a movie but did not feel like going to a restaurant (we had a gorgeous dinner at La Medusa just the day before after the market). nor cooking anything that was too complicated or too heavy.
Rather, we felt like a simple meal, preferably a one dish supper. Something we could serve in a bowl. The evening did not feel like soup so I though perhaps roasted chicken with veggies or..what about noodles?
Me: Great! I have the chanterelles I got at the market yesterday.
Su: And I have truffle pasta and cheese!
Me: Excellent! There's fresh garlic in the fridge and plenty of wine.
Minutes later (the joys of having a fellow gourmand friend that lives only a block away) Su was at the door with her basket. She showed me the beautiful Tagliolini with Truffle from Antico Pastifico Toscano Morelli she had picked up at O&Co (at Pacific Place).
As I sautéed 1/2 pound of chopped chanterelles (local, Foraged & Found Edibles) with two cloves of minced, garlic, freshly ground red pepper flakes (Cape Herb Chili Bite), Normandy butter, a bit of O&Co olive oil and fleur de sel, we had the pasta boil for 7 minutes, which we timed using the microwave (you don't want to overcook pasta this pretty).
When the pasta (made with wheat germ so it is also good for you) was ready we tossed it with the mushrooms and butter/olieve oil drippings. Meanwhile Su grated (with a Microplane zester) a mile high pile--airy, light and fluffy--of the sharp and salty Pecorino Romano she had brought along.
In less than 20 minutes dinner was served.
The aromatic, truffly pasta paired with the locally sourced chanterelles made this a dish that albeit its simplicity of steps and ingredients was utterly delicious and elegant enough to serve to guests. It is also a perfect way to put to good use all the beautoful mushrooms that can be found right now at local farmers markets.
The fact that on an improvised, last minute dish like this one, all we are doing is basically sautéeing, boiling, grating and tossing is proof that any one can make a beautiful meal at home in a short time, without too many steps, as long as you have a few basics in the pantry to put together in a snap.
And if you are lucky enough to have a great friend to help around the kitchen, even better!