Porcini Pasta Sauce
The Tuscans have a simple way to cook vegetables that doubles as a light
pasta sauce. The cooking technique is called trifolato--sliced thinly and cooked with olive oil, parsley, and garlic. Simply Tuscan! Simply wonderful!
Here's my version. Place garlic slices in oil and then heat; this prevents the garlic from burning. Add chopped mushrooms, stir, and salt to taste. The salt draws out the moisture from the vegetables and they stew in their own juices instead of just frying. Cover and let cook until tender.
I like to purée half of the vegetables to form a creamy sauce. Add a ladle of the cooking water from the pasta to the sauce. Drain the pasta and then heat the pasta in the sauce. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese and stir. This way all the pasta is covered with sauce and the sauce clings to the
pasta instead of sliding off!
This technique also works with zucchini and eggplant. I do the same with dried porcini, soaking them first in cold water, and then using them like fresh.
To stretch the dried porcini, use button mushrooms too; they will absorb the porcini flavor.