Baked Fusilli with Porcini and Provolone
Creamy and rich with great depth of flavor, this cheesy pasta is a go-to winter recipe. Undercook the pasta so it doesn't get mushy when it bakes.
- 1 pound fusilli
- 2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms
- 5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided
- 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole milk
- ¾ cup heavy cream
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- 8 ounces fresh mozzarella, chopped (about 1 medium ball)
- 6 ounces provolone, chopped (about 8 slices)
- ¼ cup finely chopped basil
- ¼ cup finely chopped sage
- Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add fusilli, cook 5 minutes, and drain. Drizzle with olive oil to prevent pasta from sticking together.
- Bring 1 cup water to a boil. Place mushrooms in a bowl and pour boiling water over to rehydrate. Let stand until softened, about 20 minutes. Remove mushrooms with a slotted spoon and place on cutting board. Reserve ⅓ cup of mushroom liquid, avoiding any grit at the bottom of the bowl. Discard remaining liquid and roughly chop mushrooms.
- Heat oven to 375°F. Melt 4 tablespoons butter in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add flour and cook, whisking constantly, until fragrant and toasted, about 3 minutes. Slowly whisk in milk and cream. Stir in salt and cook, stirring constantly, until mixture begins to thicken, 3 to 5 minutes. Remove mixture from heat and stir in reserved mushroom liquid. Add mozzarella and provolone and let stand 5 minutes. Briefly stir to combine—some cheese may not melt, and that’s fine.
- Toss pasta with cheese sauce, mushrooms, basil, and sage. Transfer to a 2-quart baking dish and dot with remaining butter. Cover with foil and bake 20 minutes. Remove foil and bake, uncovered, until golden and bubbling, about 10 minutes. Serve warm.
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