Garlic, Olives & Mushroom Pasta

As a pastatarian, I was so thrilled to find this beautiful looking buckwheat pasta and just had to make them today! To let the pasta shine, I kept the sauce very simple. Just some butter (to add richness to an otherwise light sauce) garlic, basil, olives and capers. Bright and fresh.

Also a key ingredient? King Oyster mushrooms. Probably my most favorite kind of mushroom ever! It’s hearty and sturdy yet so tender and luscious when cooked. The mushrooms also soak up all the flavors from the aromatics, it’s divine!

And last but not the least, the best part of this dish: gorgeous microgreens. One of my favorite companies @brightfresh makes the best kind, grown right here in southern California. It can’t get fresher than that. These microgreens have super robust leaves and fresh thick stems, with that brightness and flavor only fresh greens can have.

Thanks to @brightfresh for sending me this beautiful chef’s blend that also has the most gorgeous edible flowers along with broccoli, amaranth, beet, parsely, radish, kale and arugula microgreens! So much nutrition and flavor in a compact package!

Ingredients:
serves 6-8
9 oz (1 box) of pasta (mine was buckwheat tortiglioni)
1/2 cup pasta cooking water, reserved
2 tbsp vegan butter
6 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1 1/2 tbsp dried basil
2 tbsp red chilli flakes
1 cup chopped pitted green olives ( I’ve pimento chili stuffed, but you could use any type you like)
2 tbsp capers (packed in brine), drained and rough chopped
1/2 tsp coarse salt
3 king oyster mushrooms, chopped
1/4 cup vegan parmesan cheese
1 cup fresh microgreens

Method:
Let’s prep the pasta first. Drop pasta in well salted boiling water. cook for 7 minutes. Stir a few times in between. Drain, and remember to reserve half a cup of the pasta water.

Melt butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add garlic, basil and red chilli flakes. Fry for a couple of minutes until the garlic starts to turn golden.

Next add chopped olives and capers. Let this cook for about 5 minutes (Note: The olives I used were pimento chili stuffed, you could use any kind of olive you have)

Add in all the chopped king oyster mushroom. Mix well and cook for another 5 minutes. It will reduce a bit in volume and the mushrooms will lend out some water. Keep cooking till all the water is absorbed. Then add measured salt.

Cook for another 10 minutes, and this insanely delicious mixture is ready for some pasta.

Toss in the cooked pasta, mix everything together. Then add the 1/2 cup of pasta water to deglaze the pan and release all the yummy bits that may be stuck to the bottom of the pan. After about 5 minutes, the pasta is done!

Evenly sprinkle parmesan all over. And toss in fresh microgreens and edible flowers (optional) just before serving & eating.The freshness of the greens are a perfect compliment to the bright and briny pasta.

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