PICI PASTA WITH BROCCOLINI, MUSHROOMS & MOZZARELLA
Serves 4 (See photograph, page 81)
1 bunch broccolini, trimmed 100g Swiss brown mushrooms 100g pine mushrooms* 100g shimeji mushrooms* 100g chestnut mushrooms* 1 tablespoon olive oil, plus extra to serve 20g butttter 110g large buffffalo mozzarella, drained fifinely grated parmesan, to serve crusty sourdough bread and butttter, to serve
2½ cups 00 plain flflour** ¾ cup sparkling mineral water 1 tablespoon olive oil rice flflour, for dusting
To make pici pasta, place flflour, mineral water and oil in a bowl and mix until well combined. Use your hands to bring dough together, then gently knead until smooth. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside at room temperature for 30 minutes to rest. Line a tray with a clean tea towel and dust with rice flflour. Roll hazelnutsized pieces of pasta dough into 30cm strips (pici should look like rustic, fat spaghetti). Transfer pici to prepared tray and lightly dust with rice flflour. Cut broccolini lengthways into thin pieces. Blanch broccolini in a saucepan of boiling water for 1 minute or until bright green and just tender. Drain, then refresh under cold running water. Transfer broccolini to a bowl and refrigerate until required. Cut mushrooms into uniform pieces, leaving smaller mushrooms whole. Heat oil and butter in a large, deep frying pan over a medium-high heat until butter melts. Cook mushrooms, stirring occasionally, for 10 minutes or until golden and liquid has evaporated. Season with sea salt and black pepper. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boil over a medium-high heat. Add pici and cook for 2 minutes or until pasta rises to surface. Using a slotted spoon, transfer pici to frying pan with mushrooms. Add broccolini and toss over a medium heat until mushrooms and broccolini are heated through and pasta is coated with pan juices. Divide pasta among shallow serving bowls or plates. Tear mozzarella into pieces and arrange on pasta. Drizzle with extra olive oil, if desired. Serve with fifinely grated parmesan, crusty sourdough bread and butter. * Available at gourmet food stores, specialty greengrocers and farmers’ markets. ** A super-fifine Italian flflour grade used to make pasta. Available at supermarkets and delicatessens.