Back in the Silicon Valley, we used to frequent an Italian restaurant called Frankie, Johnny & Luigi Too that served the most delectable Mostacioli di Bari. The name itself basically means it is the ziti dish from the Province of Bari (near the heel of the boot of Italy). The menu described it as “Delicate pieces of filet mignon & mushrooms simmered in a delicious creamy Gorgonzola brandy sauce tossed with fresh penne pasta.” It was just that and a favorite destination for date night. A decade later as we look for winter comfort food here in Ireland, I try to recreate the recipe with regional ingredients. This is the result which I am calling Blue Cheese & Mushroom Cream Sauce over Pasta with Seared Steak.
Blue Cheese & Mushroom Cream Sauce over Pasta with Seared Steak
3 tablespoons olive oil
1/4 cup chopped shallots
1 garlic clove minced
6 oz mushrooms, sliced (I chose a mix of Button and Chestnut varieties)
Salt and pepper
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
- Warm the olive oil in a pan over medium heat and add the shallots and garlic, stirring as they cook for a couple minutes. Add in the sliced mushrooms and continue stirring to cook them until they wilt. Add salt and pepper.
- Add the Calvados and stir so it coats the ingredients in the pan then slowly pour in the cream and nutmeg. Reduce the heat to low and simmer for 5 minutes.
- While the sauce simmers, sear the steak and cook the pasta. After letting the cooked steak rest, cut into strips for serving.
- Sprinkle in half of the blue cheese into the cream sauce and stir to melt. Simmer for another 5 minutes.
- When ready to serve, plate the pasta, steak, and top with the sauce then sprinkle some of the remaining blue cheese over top.