Mushrooms and Marsala

comments: 25


Greeted by sprouting garlic, when I finally made it into the kitch. Neither cooking nor grocery shopping lately, apparently. Luckily, I had another head of garlic and a big paper bag of really fresh mushrooms; the workday went on a little longer than I'd thought it would, and I never got to the store. So, a compromise: instead of potatoes, pasta, and some Marsala-mushroom sauce. Thank you for all the suggestions yesterday — now at least I'll have recipes for the next cold, cloudy day. I'll be better prepared for that one.

Mushrooms1I put about 8 oz. of thin spaghetti on the boil. In the Dutch oven, I sauteed about a pound of sliced mushrooms in 2 T. butter/2 T. olive oil until they were soft, and some were very well-browned. I added a clove of chopped garlic and sauteed for another 30 seconds or so. Splashed in 3 T. of Marsala wine and let the alcohol bubble out. Tipped in 1/3 c. cream, and 1/3 c. of the pasta-cooking water and brought that back up to a simmer. Then drained the pasta and tossed it in the sauce for the last minute or two of cooking. Topped it off with some Parmesan, and thought to add a big handful of parsley after the photo was taken. I wish I'd had a big bowl of fresh spinach, too, and maybe some hazelnuts. All woodsy and wonderful.

Pasta2 So, not what I had in mind, and not particularly challenging, but still okay. The weather here is absolutely perfect. I can't believe July is almost over. I need to bring buttermilk poundcake to a BBQ tonight, so I'm excited about that — I'm thinking big piles of strawberries, too. Tomorrow night, homemade pizza and The Young Black Stallion with our niece. Ratatouille on Sunday afternoon, after all.

Eat, watch, eat, watch, eat, watch. Seems like we should squeeze at least a walk around the block and a salad in there somewhere, jeez. Elephant family.


sounds wonderful...and something i could probably tackle as summer has invited me to feel less like cooking...but this cooler weather does seem to invite one to want to turn on the oven/stove.

have a great weekend!

HeidiAnn says: July 27, 2007 at 10:04 AM

Boy does that pasta ever look and sound good! It's pretty darn hot here in northern California so I don't feel much like cooking either. Isn't it great when you sort of throw something together with what you've got on hand and it turns out delish? Sounds like you have a lot of fun coming up on your weekend. Enjoy!

courtney says: July 27, 2007 at 10:07 AM

Oh I have to add this to your list of cold day dishes. It is the best soup ever!

SO GOOD! I have made this several times, and had it for lunch all week long with a hunk of crusty bread, and a salad. I generally skip the puree-ing step, and just mash it with a potato masher so I have some chunks.

mmmm hazelnuts and mushrooms, that DOES sound good. We should be getting some cold nights again by ... October...

alicia, have you ever checked out Gordon Hammersley's "Bistro Cooking at Home"? I love his recipes for crisp autumn evenings especially, and I can't say enough good things about his writing style. So personal and friendly, and his recipes have become staples around here. The "walk away roast chicken" recipe really is worth the cost of the book. I found him at the seattle library and had him for weeks and weeks before I finally broke down and bought it.

The pasta dish looks wonderful. Congrats on the fallish weather. I'll be glad when we get some.

oh but i love the throw together meals. yum! princess and the warrior, did you put it on your list??

Hi there, This is not about your post (which is great) but about blog tag, it's going around and I've tagged you. See my post for today at, Cheers.

cheriwan says: July 27, 2007 at 01:17 PM

YAY and YUM! After reading yesterdays post and wishing it was cloud-ier in my part of Portland for cooking at home- gave up and did Thai. Sigh. I'm voting for a walk tonight- why is it so hard to work into the evening? I'm now dreaming of Marsala.

angeljoy says: July 27, 2007 at 01:48 PM

gosh, you always have a way of making me want to cook! You make the simplest things look and sound so yummy. Thanks for the inspiration....again

I'll take sprouting garlic over dripping potatoes any day. That's what I found in a BRAND NEW bag of potatoes in my pantry the other day. (And that drippiness does NOT smell good...)

That pasta looks yummy, btw!

ooh, you make me want to go out and get mushrooms! i just made fried artichokes the other day, which takes a heap of craziness or ambition - you get baby ones (no fuzz inside), peel off most of the leaves, slice them thin lengthwise and do an egg-flour-egg dip, then into olive oil with just salt and pepper and flipping once to brown on both sides. you really could use a 2nd person to help as you become more and more sticky. these keep in the fridge too.

I bet you sprouted that garlic deliberately just so that you could show what lovely photos you could take - even of sprouting garlic. Now I want one too. I am sure that you have just started the next big kitchen design thing. Move over bowls of lemons.

Beautiful blog! Just stumbled on it today - great pics and writing, I'll be back,

Beautiful blog! Just stumbled on it today - great pics and writing, I'll be back,

Oh wow, that looks so yums!!!

I made spaghetti yesterday too. I took fresh tomatoes out of the garden and peeled them and used a potato masher and smashed them until they were juicy and wonderful. Then cooked hambuger and onions and garlic then added the tomatoes. Served over fresh pasta. It was a delight. Nita

you are so getting the hang of your new camera.

debbies-english-treasures says: July 28, 2007 at 12:40 AM

I LOVE your blog,...
Beautiful pictures and useful information!
Keep up with the good work,...
I will be back soon, for more!
Kisses Kisses

Don't throw that sprouting garlic away! I had pizza the other day with pepperoni and garlic sprouts - delicious mild garlicky flavour!

Marsala and mushrooms are so good together (thank you, Nigella!). If you'd like it, I can send you my recipe for cinnamon buns when I get back from my rainy holiday (in Norway and Britain - great choice :). They aren't like a Danish, but made with a yeasty dough instead, and very very good. As well as authentically Scandinavian (a Swedish recipe cooked and appreciated by a Norwegian in Denmark! :).

It looks absolutely delicious! I didn't get to the store yesterday either, and we ended up having fish sticks...

Oh wow!! That looks sooo yummy! Love mushrooms and pasta! Have a great and fun weekend!

OMG, that looks soooooooooo delicious!

It all looks so delicious, and the photos are beautiful!



this cake reminds me of a cake we call "Swedish cake".
Which I made when i took our kids strawberry picking a few weeks back.
love your baby/toddler clothing!


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About Alicia Paulson


My name is Alicia Paulson
and I love to make things. I live with my husband and daughter in Portland, Oregon, and design sewing, embroidery, knitting, and crochet patterns. See more about me at




Since August of 2011 I've been using a Canon EOS 60D with an EF 18-200mm kit lens and an EF 100mm f/2.8 Macro lens.