Full of earthy umami flavours with a touch of cream and a crunchy gremolata/pangrattato topping, this mushroom orecchiette is a simple weeknight meal with a touch of class. We’ve used pancetta in this recipe but you can just as easily leave it out if you want to make it vegetarian-friendly.
1.Heat butter and oil in a medium frying pan; cook onion and garlic, stirring, for 5 minutes or until onion is soft. Add wine to pan; boil, uncovered, until reduced by half. Stir in mushrooms; cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat, for 5 minutes or until softened. Add cream, stir over medium heat for 2 minutes or until thickened slightly. Season to taste; cover to keep warm.
2.Meanwhile, preheat oven to 180°C/350°F. Place pancetta, in a single layer on an oven tray lined with baking paper. Bake for 10 minutes or until golden and crisp.
3.Make gremolata crumbs. Heat butter in a small saucepan over medium heat; add torn bread and garlic. Cook, stirring, for 2 minutes or until bread is golden brown. Remove from heat; stir in parsley and rind.
4.Cook pasta in a large saucepan of boiling salted water until just tender. Drain, reserving ¼ cup (60ml) of cooking water. Return pasta to pan.
5.Add hot sauce to pasta; toss gently to combine. If mixture is a little thick, add some of the reserved pasta water. Serve pasta topped with crumbled pancetta, and gremolata crumbs.
You can use button mushrooms for a mild flavour, if you prefer.