Perfection in every bite... Mushroom Penne Pasta

Hallelujah!  Hallelujah!  Halle-luuuu-jaaaah!  Yup, you guessed it, I really must be happy today.  I am, and here is why.  I came home from work so tired because of my commute.  My commute isn't a smooth long drive, instead it is a bumper to bumper long drive.  People drive like maniacs around the city area.  You can probably understand why it gets so stressful being on the road.  By now you must be wondering why exactly am I happy, I'm getting to it surely but slowly.

I came home and relaxed for a while before I began making my Mushroom Pasta.  After I finished cooking, the dishes in the sink were piled high, the dishwasher was full, and clean.  Arrrrrrrgghhhh!  I was so tired by this point and I was in no mood to empty the dishwasher.  My husband heard me whining from across the room and came into the kitchen and actually said to me, "Go watch TV and I'll do the dishes."  Seriously, this line was music to my ears.  I said, "Well, it's not really dirty dishes I'm after, can you please empty the dishwasher instead?"  He said, "Okay fine."  S-W-E-E-T!  Before he could change his mind, I quickly left the kitchen and sat on the couch watching TV.  I let him do his thing, I knew half the dishes would end up in the wrong place, but did I really care?  NO!  I was so happy to get some help and felt appreciated.  He then offered to do the dishes and at this point I felt bad so I said, "It's okay, I'll take care of it."  I probably should have been like, "YEAH YEAH."  LOL!  Maybe next time, for now let me not push it, I don't wanna turn him off by the idea of doing chores so early on, we have a long way to go.  Knock on wood! Today felt like a real partnership, we worked as a team, it didn't matter who did more or less, we both stepped it up and that was enough.

After we were done cleaning up we had some Pasta with White Wine.  It was the perfect meal after a long day.  This dish is a great substitute for all those meat lovers, mushroom has a meaty texture.  My husband who is not a huge fan of mushrooms really enjoyed this dish and I love mushrooms so this is one of my favorite pasta dishes.

On a separate note, while I was browsing the internet for fun, I came across this article that caught my eye, "7 Skin care rules dermatologists swear by, - courtesy of Yahoo" I thought you guys may like to read it.  Food is related to skin; skin is related to food, in the end, you are what you eat!

NUTRITION: Mushrooms are a very good source of Vitamin B6 and Protein.  Cheese is an excellent source of Calcium and Protein.  Choose whole grain pasta which adds Fiber to this dish. 

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 1 1/2 tbsp (for the saute)
  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil - 1 tsp (for boiling water)
  • Crushed Red Pepper Flakes - 1 tsp
  • Garlic - 3 cloves (chopped)
  • Onions - 2 medium (chopped)
  • Baby Bella Mushrooms - 10 oz. package (roughly chopped/diced)
  • White Mushrooms - 12 oz. package (roughly chopped/diced)
  • Salt to taste
  • Black Pepper - 1/2 tsp (initially); 1/4 tsp (final stage for the sauce)
  • Barilla Marinara Sauce - 1 bottle
  • Barilla Whole Grain Penne Pasta - 1 box (1 pound)
  • Parmesan Cheese - 1/2 - 3/4 cup
  • Fresh Basil - 1 handful (chopped)

1. Set aside water to boil.

2. Chop the garlic and onions.

3. Heat a wok/pan on medium heat, add extra virgin olive oil, once heated, add crushed red pepper flakes.

4. Once the pepper begins to sizzle, add the onions and garlic.  Stir.  Add a little salt and lower the heat to dial #3.

5. In the meantime, roughly chop or dice the mushrooms.  You can use any combination of mushrooms you like... I love Baby Bella.  

6. After about 7-10 minutes this is how the onions should look.

7. Add the chopped mushrooms.  Increase heat to medium heat. 

8. Season with salt and 1/2 tsp black pepper.  Combine. 

9. The mushrooms will start cooking down, they will release water, and this will take about 10-15 minutes. 

10. Once the mushrooms are cooked and the water has evaporated, add the Marinara Sauce.  Combine.

11. Cover with a lid and cook for 10 minutes.

12. At this point your water should be boiling.  Add a little salt and 1 tsp of EVOO to the boiling water.  

13. Add pasta.  Stir and allow this to cook until Al Dente (about 8-10 minutes).

14. Start grating the parmesan cheese.  I used about 3/4 of a cup... cheese is a good source of calcium and should be eaten in moderation.  I justify pretty much anything.  :-)

15. Chop the basil.  Set aside.

16. After 10 minutes check the sauce.  Taste it.  Adjust salt, you can add some more black pepper, I added about a 1/4 tsp.  Stir.

17. Once the pasta is cooked, add the pasta to the sauce.  Lower the heat all the way to Lo for the sauce.

18. Combine.

19. Add cheese.  Combine.  

20. Add basil.  Combine.  Wait about 15 minutes before serving, this will allow all the flavors to combine.  


  1. this looks great!, i cant wait to try making it :)

  2. The penne really looks delicious! Totally something that I would make for dinner, and save some leftovers for work the next morning. I'm going to have to put it on my list to try soon. Today I plan to make a Low Fat Tomato Pasta Salad. I hope it's tasty. Thanks for sharing your recipe!

  3. Hey, any recipes for making the sauce at home. We dont get this sauce easily around here.


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