Rigatoni with Vegetable Bolognese
Giada at the Cromwell - Las Vegas
"One of the dishes I’m serving at the Beard House is one that I had to fight long and hard to have on my restaurant menu, and it’s now become one of the most popular: rigatoni with vegetable Bolognese. It’s not your classic Bolognese, because it’s entirely vegetable-based. I know there are skeptics out there, but the depth of flavor is unique, and it also shows a wide range of flavor profiles that we have in Italy that go beyond just what people traditionally think of as 'Italian food.'”—Giada De Laurentiis
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 1 1/2 cups hot water
- 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
- 1 onion, peeled and chopped
- 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme leaves
- 1 teaspoon chopped fresh oregano leaves
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 5 ounces assorted mushrooms (like shiitake and cremini), stemmed and chopped
- 2 tablespoons tomato paste
- 3/4 cup red wine
- 1/2 cup mascarpone cheese
- 1 pound rigatoni pasta
- 1/4 cup grated Parmesan
Place the dried mushrooms in a small bowl and cover with 1 1/2 cups very hot water. Set aside and let the mushrooms soften.
Place the carrots, onion, bell pepper, and garlic in a food processor. Pulse the vegetables until finely chopped but still chunky. Place the olive oil in a large, heavy skillet over medium-high heat. Add the chopped vegetables, thyme, oregano, salt, and pepper, and cook until tender, about 6 minutes.
Strain the porcini mushrooms, reserving the porcini mushroom liquid. Add the porcini mushrooms, fresh mushrooms, and tomato paste and continue cooking, stirring to dissolve the tomato paste, until the mushrooms are softened, about 5 minutes.
Add the porcini mushroom liquid and red wine. Bring the liquid to a boil, reduce the heat to low, and let the mixture simmer until the liquid is reduced by half, about 10 minutes. Add the mascarpone cheese and stir just until the cheese is incorporated.
Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes.
Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup of the cooking liquid and add to the vegetable mixture. Add some of the reserved pasta cooking liquid, if necessary, to moisten the sauce. Toss with grated Parmesan and serve.