Here’s a simple recipe for mushroom pasta stir-fry.
In this recipe, the blend of star anise, cloves, Chinese cinnamon, Sichuan peppercorns and fennel intensifies the robust flavor of the mushrooms.
For the pasta:
Kosher salt and black pepper
1 pound spaghetti or other long pasta
4 tablespoons neutral oil
1 pound mushrooms (any small variety), trimmed and cut into 1/4-inch-thick slices
2 garlic cloves, grated
1 1/4 teaspoons five-spice blend
3/4 pound broccolini, trimmed and cut into 3-inch pieces, thick stems halved lengthwise
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 scallions, thinly sliced
For the sauce:
2 tablespoons oyster sauce
2 tablespoons maple syrup or brown sugar< 1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon sesame oil
1 tablespoon chile oil or chile crisp
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of pasta cooking water, then drain.
Heat a large (12-inch), deep skillet on medium-high.
When hot, add 2 tablespoons oil and mushrooms. Cook for 7-8 minutes, stir every 2 minutes or so. The mushrooms will release liquid, which will evaporate as it cooks. When the mushrooms start to turn golden, add garlic, five-spice and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and black pepper. Then, cook for 1 minute. Transfer mushrooms to a plate.
While the mushrooms are cooking, make sauce: In a small bowl, whisk oyster sauce, maple syrup, soy sauce, sesame oil and chile oil with 1/4 cup water until combined. Set aside.
Heat the same skillet over medium-high. Add remaining 2 tablespoons oil and broccolini. Season with salt and pepper and cook for 4-5 minutes, until the broccolini is tender but still crisp.
Add pasta, sauce and butter. Toss with tongs to combine, then add reserved pasta water, 1/4 cup at a time, to loosen sauce. When butter melts, add mushrooms and toss. Serve topped with scallions.
Total time: 30 minutes; serves 4.