April 15, 2012

Chestnut and Mushroom Sauce with Rye Tagliatelle

I did promise you more chestnuts recipes so here goes! Chestnuts and mushrooms are simply made for each other and this sauce, served with earthy rye tagliatelle, is a perfect autumn dish to savour. I know you might think that chestnuts are just too much work with all the peeling and whatnot. But that's exactly why this particular dish is such a winner - you can simply cut the roasted chestnuts in half and spoon out the flesh, so there's no peeling needed!

Crumbly chestnuts are perfect for the sauce and they bring incredible sweetness to the dish. If you're able to find wild (fresh or dried) mushrooms, I do recommend using them for a stronger flavour, but plain button or brown mushrooms work fine as well. I managed to sneak in some extra vegetables in the sauce, just a stalk of celery and some kale, but you could add onion, carrot, even spinach.

Chestnut and Mushroom Sauce with Rye Tagliatelle
(Serves 2-4)

700-1000g chestnuts
150g oyster mushrooms (or wild mushrooms of your choice)
150g brown mushrooms (or other mushrooms of your choice)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 celery stalk
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon dried thyme (or a few sprigs of fresh)
1 teaspoon dried rosemary (or 1 sprig of fresh)
250ml vegetable stock
4 kale leaves, roughly chopped
fresh parsley, to serve
rye tagliatelle, to serve*

* if you can't find rye tagliatelle, try wholegrain spelt pasta instead. In Australia Natural Pulse makes excellent 100% rye (and vegan!) pasta.  

1. Preheat oven to 200C. 

2. Wash the chestnuts and cut a cross-section on each chestnut. Spread the chestnuts on a roasting tray and roast for about 20 minutes. 

3. Cut the chestnuts in half and scoop out the flesh. Chop the mushrooms into thin strips and finely chop the celery.

4. Heat oil in a large frying pan, add garlic and celery and cook for a few minutes. Add mushrooms and cook for a further few minutes. Add herbs, chestnuts and vegetable stock and leave to simmer on a low heat for about 10 minutes. This will give you a fairly thick sauce, but add more vegetable stock if you want it to be thinner. Finally fold in the kale and let them heat through.

5. Cook the pasta for 5-7 minutes or until al dente. Serve with the chestnut and mushroom sauce and sprinkle with some fresh parsley.