This beauty is going to combine pan-roasted mushrooms with whole wheat pasta with the really defined ridges (mmm texture!) and creamy cauliflower sauce tossed up together, and then baked under a blanket of Gruyere cheese and decorated with fresh sage ribbons. How good is sage, by the way? Oh my gosh IT’S GOOD.
- 1 lb. whole wheat penne pasta
- 1 head cauliflower (about 6–7 cups of florets)
- 3 cups reduced sodium chicken broth, divided
- 3/4 cups milk
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 2 cloves garlic
- 24 ounces fresh sliced mushrooms
- 4 tablespoons butter, divided
- 1 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
- fresh sage, sliced into thin ribbons
- extras: caramelized onions, bacon, sausage
- Bring a large pot of water to boil. Cook the pasta for 5 minutes – it should still be a little firm. Drain, toss with a drizzle of oil, and set aside.
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add the cauliflower, and cook for 5 minutes until tender-crisp. Meanwhile saute the minced garlic with a tablespoon of butter. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the cooked cauliflower to a blender with 2 cups broth, milk, oil, salt, and sauteed garlic. Puree until very smooth. You might need to do this in batches.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Heat the 3 tablespoons butter in a very large skillet. Add the mushrooms and saute until golden brown.
- Toss the cooked pasta, cauliflower sauce, and mushrooms together. Add the remaining cup of broth to help the consistency stay saucy.
- Transfer to a deep 9×13 baking dish. Sprinkle with cheese and bake uncovered at 400 for 10-15 minutes. Some of the moisture from the mushrooms will seep out – give it a quick stir to reincorporate it and make it creamy. Top with fresh sage ribbons.
- If you have time and want some extra flavor, add some caramelized onions, bacon, or sausage to the pasta before mixing and baking. YUM!