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2000s Recipes + Menus

Penne with Grilled Portabellas and Pecorino

Serves4 (main course)
  • Active time:25 min
  • Start to finish:30 min
CHRIS SCHLESINGER AND JOHN WILLOUGHBY
June 2009
Mushrooms in general are great for grilling, and portabellas—which not only have a wonderful, earthy flavor but are also large enough to be easy to handle on the grill—are perhaps the best of all.
  • 1 1/4 lb portabella mushrooms (about 6), stemmed
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • 3/4 lb penne
  • 3/4 cup grated Pecorino Romano
  • 1 tablespoon chopped marjoram or oregano
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • Prepare grill for direct-heat cooking over hot charcoal (high heat for gas); see “Grilling Procedure.”
  • Brush mushroom caps with vegetable oil and season with 1/4 tsp each of salt and pepper.
  • Oil grill rack, then grill mushrooms, stemmed sides down, covered only if using a gas grill, 5 minutes. Turn mushrooms over and grill until tender, about 3 minutes more. Cool slightly and slice.
  • Cook penne in a pasta pot of well-salted boiling water until al dente. Reserve 3 Tbsp cooking water, then drain pasta.
  • Toss pasta with reserved cooking water, mushrooms, Pecorino, marjoram, olive oil, and salt and pepper to taste.
Cooks’ notes:
  • Portabellas can be grilled in batches in a lightly oiled hot grill pan over medium-high heat, turning once, until tender, about 10 minutes per batch.
  • Portabellas can be grilled 1 day ahead and chilled. Bring to room temperature before using.
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