mushroom, fennel & ricotta ragu with thyme


2 small shallots, diced

4 cloves of garlic, sliced

1 bulb fennel, diced

bunch of fresh thyme, approx 2 tbsp

2 portobello mushrooms, diced

1 cup of crimini mushrooms, diced

2 tbsp of dried porcini mushrooms

2 pinches of red pepper flakes

2 tbsp of tomato paste

1 cup of white wine

1 cup of ricotta,

dash of heavy cream

1/2 lemon, juice

black pepper

flaky salt

parsley, for serving


begin by soaking the porcini mushrooms in boiling water, approximately 3 cups.

next you can start sautéing in a heavy bottomed pan (i like a dutch oven) over medium heat the onions, garlic, fennel and red pepper flakes to bloom in the oil as well. season to taste.

next add in the thyme, and make sure there are no woody stems being used. just the delicate leaves. you could also use dried thyme here.

once the vegetables are softened add in the crimini and portabello mushrooms and let them cook down for a few minutes. add in the tomato paste and cook for 1-2 minutes.

It will go from bright red to a deep brown color. add in the white wine.

take the porcini mushrooms that you have been steeping, out of the broth and finely dice. add them into the vegetables and then also add in the porcini stock.

turn off the heat and let everything cool for 3-5 minutes.

cook the pasta according to packet instructions in well salted boiling water. minus 2 minutes as the pasta will continue to cook in the sauce. be sure to reserve some of the pasta water.

next blend the mushroom mixture in a food processor or blender, with the ricotta. blend until desired thickness— sauce should be fairly thick and creamy.

transfer the sauce back into the heavy bottomed pan, and toss in the cooked pasta and heavy cream. stir to combine, adding a little pasta water to loosen the sauce if needed.

serve in your favorite bowl with a good dollop of ricotta, flaky salt and some freshly chopped parsley to finish.