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Recipe for Penne alla Boscaiola

The penne alla Boscaiola (boscaiola means woodsman) is a classic italian pasta recipe which is made with pancetta, cream and mushrooms, it is usually served in the fall when the temperature drops, because it is the season when in Italy you can easily find many mushrooms, the main ingredient of this dish. While we strongly advise against going out and picking mushrooms, you can easily find these ones at the store... This spaghetti sauce recipe is often served over penne, pennette or tagliatelle.

As for the origins of the Boscaiola dish, the recipes alla boscaiola are seen as a quintessential part of Tuscan cooking, but really it does not have a real single place of origin: the Boscaiola are in fact quite common in many regions of Italy, even outside Tuscany. If by any chance you find yourself in Avellino by late August, you can stop to enjoy a plate of penne alla Boscaiola at the yearly feast of the penne alla boscaiola which is held in Torelli Mercogliano, in Avellino, last week of August.

| Yield: 4 servings | Preparation: | Cooking and Baking: | Total time: | | by:


Alla Boscaiola
Frequently made with penne, I made mine with linguine instead...
* 1 big Onion
* 1 lb. varied mushroom types (white, portobello, or dried mushroom mix)
* 3/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
* 2 cups white sauce (Alfredo or Bechamel)
* 16 oz. black olives
* 1/2 lb. smoked bacon, or even better Pancetta
* 1 lb. pennette or penne rigate
* freshly ground black pepper
* 1 red hot chili pepper
* Parsley

Cooking instructions:

For four regular pasta portions;

1) Start preparing this recipe by preparing the mushrooms; rehydrating them if you are using dried ones, carefully cleaning them by brushing them with a damp cloth and then finally cutting them into thin slices.

2) Cut the bacon into small strips then slice the red pepper, and slice the olives

3) While you are still preparing the ingredients, set a pot to boil with salted water, into which you will later boil the pasta.

4) In a skillet, sauté the bacon for a few minutes and, in another pan start cooking the chopped onion, then add the mushrooms and cook for a few minutes, then add the bacon once it is cooked, so all ingredients are in the same skillet.

5) Then add the diced pepper and the sliced olives; cook until the pepper is cooked. Meanwhile, when the water has started to boil, cook the pasta, until "al dente".

6) Cook the vegetables for 5-10 minutes and if necessary add some of the water we boiled the pasta in. When the vegetables and bacon are ready add the chopped parsley and pour the white sauce in and mix.

7) Drain the pasta, pour into the pan that has the sauce in and stir well. You can serve the pasta with some grated parmesan...

Enjoy your meal!