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mushroom penne

Mushroom Penne

Endives give this penne pasta recipe a special flavor. Quick, easy and diary free, this is a healthy way to eat pasta.
Prep Time 15 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Total Time 30 mins
Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian


  • Chef’s knife
  • Heavy skillet
  • Large stockpot or pasta pot
  • Measuring cups and spoons
  • Mixing bowls
  • Nonstick fry pan
  • Strainer
  • Wooden spoons


Shopping List

  • 1 ½ pounds mushrooms
  • 4 Belgian endives
  • 1 bunch flat-leaf (Italian) parsley
  • 1 bunch thyme
  • 1 lb good quality dried penne

Pantry Items

  • Bay leaves
  • Black pepper
  • Extra-virgin olive oil
  • 4 garlic cloves
  • Sea salt


When you walk in the door

  • Fill the pasta pot 2/3 with water, add 2 tbsps. salt and put over high heat
  • Get out Pantry Items and Tools
  • Assemble the ingredients
  • Open the wine and pour yourself a glass


  • Trim the ends from the mushrooms.  Either rinse them very quickly, or wipe each with a damp paper towel (if they’re very dirty) then thinly slice them.
  • Rinse and pat dry the parsley.  Pluck 1 cup leaves.
  • Separate 10 thyme sprigs.
  • Peel  the garlic.  Leave 2 cloves garlic whole and cut the other 2 cloves lengthwise into thick slices.
  • Trim the endives, and discard any damaged leaves, cut them in half, lengthwise.


  • Heat 2 tbsps. olive oil in a heavy skillet over medium-high heat.  When the oil is hot but not smoking, add the mushrooms, stir, season with salt and pepper and cook, stirring and shaking the pan for about 7 minutes.
  • Mince the parsley and the 2 whole garlic cloves together, and cover with a bowl so the flavors don’t escape.
  • Put 1 tbsp. olive oil in the nonstick fry pan.  Set the endives in the pant, cut side down.
  • Strew the endives with 10 thyme sprigs, 2 bay leaves, the 2 cloves garlic that are cut in slices and a generous amount of salt and pepper.
  • Pour 3 tbsps. water over the endives and set over medium-high heat.  When they begin to sizzle, cover and cook for 7 minutes.
  • Put the pasta in the boiling water and cook until it is al dente, 7-12 minutes.
  • Check the mushrooms and stir.  Add 1 tbsp. oil and the garlic and parsley mixture, stir and shake the pan for about 5 more minutes, until the mushrooms are nice and tender and just slightly golden.  Remove them from the heat.
  • Check the endives.  They should be getting nice and golden on the cut side and tender through.  Remove the lid so all the liquid can cook away and the endives can caramelize, which will take 3-4 minutes.
  • Set the table, then check the pasta.  If it’s al dente, drain it, saving some of the cooking liquid.
  • Put the pasta in a large bowl.  Add the mushrooms, 1 tbsp. olive oil and 2-3 tbsps. pasta cooking liquid and toss, toss, toss.  Taste for seasoning.  If the pasta is dry, add additional pasta cooking liquid until it’s the way you like it.
  • Arrange the endives on a platter, discarding the herbs.  Make sure all the pieces of garlic go on the platter too – they’re delicious!
  • Take everything to the table.  Don’t forget the wine!
Keyword Chicken Fajita Recipe, Pasta, Penne, Penne Mushroom