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May 04, 2014

Ziti with Portobello Mushrooms, Caramelized onions, and Goat Cheese

The way to get the most flavor out of this dish begins with caramelizing the onions and cooking the mushrooms until they are golden brown. With all the flavor you won't need to reach for the salt.

Serves 4


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 2 onions, sliced thin
  • 12 ounces baby Portobello mushrooms (cremini), sliced
  • 3 tablespoons fresh parsley, chopped
  • 1/2 pound ziti
  • 3 ounces goat cheese, crumbled
  • 2 tablespoons good quality extra virgin olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons Parmesan cheese, freshly grated
  • Plus more for serving


    Heat 1 tablespoon olive oil in a large frying pan on medium heat. Add onions and cook stirring occasionally until the onions are well browned, about 15 minutes. Remove from pan to a plate.
    Use the same pan to melt the butter and other 1 tablespoon olive oil. Add the mushrooms and cook on medium high heat until tender and brown about 8 minutes. Add the onions back to the pan. Add the parsley and season to taste with salt and pepper.

    In a large pot of boiling water, cook the ziti until al dente about 12 minutes. Reserve ½ cup pasta water and drain ziti.

    Add the ziti to the onion and mushrooms with the reserved pasta water and extra virgin oil. Add the goat cheese and stir to incorporate.

    Plate and top with Parmesan cheese.

    Cooking Wiser

    Follow my cooking tips for cooking perfect pasta

    Create your own:

    Add more smoky or earthy flavor by using any combination of wild mushrooms; oyster, shiitake, and/or chanterelles for example.

    To add a little different flavor, add fresh basil leaves to the water when cooking the pasta. I never salt pasta when cooking it. It makes it easier to control the flavor and for this recipe, you don't need salt.

    Change the flavor by using a different cheese, just make sure it is a cheese that melts well like cream cheese or Mozzarella.

  • Posted by terri at May 4, 2014 02:03 AM