I recently stumbled upon Saveur’s 10 favorite pastas and figured I had it made. I love pasta. Saveur loves pasta. We’d meet somewhere and have one hell of a dinner. And this is the one I fell for. I was immediately drawn to this dish because of how robust and filling it all sounded, even though there wasn’t an ounce of meat present. It exceeded my expectations. I was amazed at the full flavor and enormous body of this dish. I suppose the wonderful mushrooms had something to do with it, but I’m going to thank all that salt I dumped into the pasta water before the noodles ever went in. This dish didn’t need an ounce of seasoning beyond the obligatory sprinkling of Parmesan. It tasted as if some reduced stock had been thrown in.
The most expensive item in the meal—the sherry—is also the one that can most easily be substituted. A dry white wine would work perfectly fine. But it would slightly change the nature and aroma of the dish. And splurging for that Spanish beverage wouldn’t be a complete waste. A good bottle of sherry is also worth drinking, and paired so well that I’m really glad I bit the bullet and bought the bottle.