Mushroom. Pasta. Olives. Tomato sauce.
I don't know about you, but that's all I need to hear. The second I hear mushroom I'm usually sold, to be honest. It's crazy to think I've never actually shared a recipe using shiitake mushroom for the blog! They're a nice change from your usual cremini mushroom and add a bit different flavor and texture.
Most of the ingredients I used for this recipe are pantry staples, except for the mushroom and the olives, but you could easily use sun-dried kalamata olives if you have those (or just skip them), and dried mushroom in place of the shiitake. I remember I loved wild mushroom picking as a kid and we always sun-dried the mushroom we wouldn't eat right away.
With the virus going around, I've been spending loads of time in the kitchen, just like you, I'm pretty sure. Right? Have you tried making bread yet? Or even just banana bread?
Everyone seems to be going bananas for homemade bread (excuse the pun) these days and I actually managed to find some dry active yeast at the farmers market the other day. But let's be real here, I bought it just in case. I'll probably keep putting off actually using it till I fully forget about it, but shhh don't tell anyone. Let's just make this pasta instead, it only takes 30 minutes! And let me tell you, it's really good.
I've been buying pre-made pasta sauces for as long as I can remember but nothing really compares to a homemade tomato sauce. It's super easy to put together! You can also make it from scratch by using fresh tomatoes but that seems too ambitious for everyday cooking so I went with quality organic crushed tomatoes here. Don't buy cheap crushed tomatoes or tomato puree, though, you'll really taste the difference.
You might find it strange that I added balsamic vinegar to the tomato sauce but I heard someone saying once that it enhances the flavor and I've been adding it to my tomato sauces ever since. You can't really taste it but it's the little something that elevates the sauce from good to amazing. But hey, don't take my word for it. Try it yourself! Hope you like the recipe.
Stay safe & healthy. xoPrint
Simple tomato sauce with shiitake mushroom. This is my go-to tomato sauce now, and way better than any store-bought tomato sauce I've ever tried!
- 1 tablespoon avocado oil or other high-heat cooking oil
- 1 yellow onion, finely chopped
- 3-4 cloves of garlic, minced
- approx. 20 shiitake mushroom, wiped with a damp paper towel, ends of stems removed, and sliced
- 2 teaspoon Italian seasoning blend**
- 2 tablespoon tomato paste
- 420 ml crushed tomatoes (approx. 2 cups)
- 2 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
- 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar (optional*)
- sea salt & pepper
- 250g brown rice spaghetti (enough for 2-4 people)
Add-ins to make the meal more filling: cooked chickpeas, haricot beans, butter beans, green lentils
Tomato Sauce with Shiitake Mushroom
- In a big pan, heat up the avocado oil, and saute the chopped onion for a few minutes until translucent but not brown. Add the garlic and cook for 1-2 more minutes until fragrant.
- Add chopped shiitake, dried herbs, stir to combine, add a splash of water to glaze the pan, and cook covered for about 10 mins. Add more water as necessary. Shiitake don't release much water so I added quite a lot to prevent sticking.
- Add the tomato paste, more water, and cook covered for about 5 more mins.
- Add the balsamic vinegar, olive oil, and tomato sauce, and stir to combine.
- Bring back to a soft boil over low-medium heat while you cook the pasta. Keep the heat on low to prevent burning.
- Cook the spaghetti following the instructions on the package. Reserve ½ cup of the cooking water before draining. Drain and rise the pasta and add it to the sauce. Mix using two spatulas or tongs, and serve immediately after the pasta is heated up throughout.
- Optional: top with grated parmesan, goat cheese, or nutritional yeast.
- Keeps in the fridge in an airtight container for 2 days.
* I use balsamic vinegar here to enhance the flavor. You don't really taste it but it's that something that just gives it a boost in flavor and brings it all together.
**I used Simply Organic Italian seasoning blend which I highly recommend but you can make your own blend with dried herbs: 1 teaspoon oregano, ¼ teaspoon marjoram, ¼ teaspoon rosemary, ¼ teaspoon thyme, and ¼ teaspoon basil
Keywords: tomato sauce, pasta, shiitake, spaghetti