The Foraging Trilogy III: Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

This trilogy started with a day trip to Portland and a delicious lunch. The meal included a meze plate that had a wonderful Italian black pepper dry salami. I made a note to see if one of the local markets might have it in stock. While at the markets, I found fresh mushrooms that reminded me of the risotto that I had enjoyed earlier in the day at The Blue Spoon. Now “home again, home again, jiggity jig.” From a successful day of urban foraging, I created a meal later in the week that was inspired by the forager, the chef and the market.

To start the meal I created an antipasto with ingredients from the day’s foraging adventure. Simple to put together, it consisted of  pepper crusted dry salami, Gorgonzola Dolce with a drizzle of honey, Robiola Tre Latti, a variety of olives marinated with lemon peel, thyme and red pepper flakes, and marinated red peppers that were roasted on the grill. This was served with crostini and a dark raisin nut bread.

Antipasto…Fruits Of The Forage

For the main course, I had purchased a large handful of several varieties of wild mushrooms…morels, chanterelle, oyster, shiitake and cremini. They were simply sautéed in butter and thyme to enhance their earthy flavor.

A Wonderful Selection Of Mushrooms…Morel, Chanterelle, Oyster, Shiitake  And Cremini

The mushrooms were tossed with an imported Italian pasta called Mafaldine, which is a pretty ribbon pasta with a rippled edge on one or both sides. It was named after queen Mafaida of Savoy.

Mafaldine Pasta With Wild Mushrooms

Mafaldine Pasta With Wild Mushrooms And Fresh Thyme

This recipe is for two persons, adjust accordingly.

  • 1/2 lb. of Mafaldine pasta (pappardelle could be substituted)
  • an assortment of your favorite mushrooms, approx. 12 – 16 oz., sliced. I used morels, chanterelles, oyster, shiitake and cremini
  • 2 Tbsp. butter plus an additional 2 Tbsp. to finish sauce
  • 2 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp. chopped fresh thyme
  • salt and pepper to taste
  • 3 Tbsp. olive oil
  • 1 shallot, minced
  • 1/2 c. chicken broth diluted with 1/2 c. water
  • 1/2 c. white wine
  • 1 c. reserved pasta water

Cook pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water according to the package directions until barely al dente. Reserve 1 cup pasta water.  As the pasta cooks,  heat olive oil in a skillet large enough to hold the cooked pasta, and sauté the shallot and garlic until soft and translucent. Add the white wine, chicken broth, salt and pepper to taste. Let the sauce simmer and reduce until pasta is done.

Heat the butter in a skillet and sauté the mushrooms, garlic and thyme until tender, about 5 minutes. Do not crowd or they will not brown. Cook in batches if necessary.

To finish the dish, add the additional 2 Tbsp. of butter to the sauce and stir to emulsify. Add the drained pasta to the skillet with the sauce to finish cooking to al dente.  Add the sautéed mushrooms and toss. Add some of the reserved pasta water if the pasta seems dry. Garnish with chopped fresh parsley if desired.


Because of the delicate earthy flavor of the mushrooms, I don’t add grated cheese to this dish when preparing it. I serve grated Pecorino Romano cheese at the table for anyone that wishes to add it to their dish.

I hope that you have enjoyed this trilogy. Remember that foraging, which is the act of searching and gathering of food sources, can be a pleasure. Don’t look at food shopping as a mundane chore but instead let it inspire you to create a great meal with the freshest of ingredients.

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I travel the back roads of the world, sharing great food and interesting places and enjoyable pastimes.

137 thoughts on “The Foraging Trilogy III: Home Again, Home Again, Jiggity Jig

    1. Hi Carol, Thank you for your compliment. The trip was very rewarding in gathering lots of delicious goodies. The peppered salami I found was a brand called Busetto and is very good.

  1. That’s a beautiful antipasto plate. I love the variety. And those mushrooms in all their varieties look perfect served in that pasta. What a beautiful, clean and flavourful dish xx

    1. The antipasto plate is a nice way to start a meal when entertaining friends…a little something for everyone. We were fortunate to find such a lovely assortment of mushrooms, especially the morels and chanterelles.

  2. This would be a perfect meal for me … simple with the best of ingredients. I love your idea of foraging! It’s about the only kind of foraging I do too but I reckon foraging in great food stores and markets is as enjoyable as out in the wild.

    1. Hi Kay, I’m glad you agree that foraging in the markets is enjoyable. Thank you for your nice compliment…it was a delicious meal.

  3. I wish I were so creative in the kitchen. I LOVE a great food shop, but lack the creativity you have. Glad you share the recipes–I get to “fake” my creativity!
    : )

    1. Hi John, Thank you for your compliment. The Mafaldine pasta was pretty with its rippled edge and held its shape when it was cooked. It went well with the mushrooms.

  4. Looks wonderful! While stationed in Germany many years ago I worked in a small lab that was out in the woods near Kaiserslautern. We had several german nationals that worked in the lab with us. One woman, Mararet, loved to forage the woods for wild mushrooms. We had a small kitchen and I remember the aroma and earthy flavors of those wild mushrooms that you reminded me of in your post…..Thanks for sharing

    1. Hi Bishop, It is nice to know that I brought back memories of some wonderful meals from your time spent in Germany. We will be in Germany and Austria in October and I’m hoping to have some delicious mushroom meals. There are so many varieties there that we don’t seem to have here. I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

    1. Thank you Rosemary, the pasta was delicious. I usually can’t get such a nice selection of fresh mushrooms, especially the fresh morels.

  5. Your mushroom assortment is amazing. Not available at my usual haunts but then I have been set in my shopping habits for a while and should really check out some other places. But your pasta dish looks so very very good. Makes me more and more desirous of making my own pasta one day even without a pasta machine to make things easier…

    Yummy antipasto plate. I really should try olives one day

    1. Hi Boleyn, I was very lucky to find such a wonderful assortment of fresh mushrooms in Portland. At our little local market, there is usually just buttom and cremini. I remember you saying that you need to try olives. There are so many varieties now that I’m sure you would find one type that you would like.

      1. RE: Trying olives.
        I need to be put in a social situation where there’s a plate in front of me with several different kinds and I have to try at least one. 🙂 Cause there’s no way I’m buying any to bring home and try myself. Even from the deli section of the grocery store. 🙂

      2. You are too funny Boleyn. Let me know if you ever try one…just remember there is a pit inside that you have to deal with in you social situation.

    1. Hi Judy, My husband and I did had a successful day of foraging without venturing into the wild. The fresh mushrooms were a great find and oh so good in the pasta dish.

  6. Would harvesting from my garden be considered foraging also?
    Love your pasta dish. Will be added to my “to make list”. I believe all those mushrooms are available at our Rhinebeck Farmers Market.

    1. Hi Norma, I definitely think you forage everyday…discovering what is ready to be picked for your garden. I do hope you will be able to find the mushrooms at your farmers market. Thank you for your comment, I hope you will enjoy the pasta dish.

  7. The plate looks fabulous..I like offering great beginnings like that..although it would be a meal for me too:)

    But the mushroom pasta has me craving it now:)

    1. Thank you Monique, for your nice compliment. If I’m just cooking for just the two of us, a nice antipasto plater does make a meal all by itself. the pasta was delicious.

    1. Hi Tanya, Thank you for your nice compliment…it was a great bowl of pasta. I know that you and Big Man know just where to look on your mountain for nice foraged mushrooms.

  8. Those mushrooms look wonderful, perfect and fresh. They have such great colours. The pasta is a great way to use them preserving their flavour and texture. GG

    1. Hi GG, The mushrooms were a great find…I would never find them at our little market at the lake, so the trip to Portland really paid off. They were delicious with the pasta.

  9. I love this meal and I know my husband will too. I like the idea of mixing the different mushrooms for a burst of flavor and serving the cheese on the side! We’re off on Friday to do some proper Portland exploring, I’ll let you know if I find anything exciting!

    I truly enjoyed your “Trilogy of Foraging Series!

    1. Hi Mary, Thank you for your compliment. I’m happy that you enjoyed the trilogy. It seemed like the perfect way let people see how much fun a day of searching out good food can be. Enjoy your time in Portland and let me know if you find something exciting.

    1. Thank you Robert, the antipasto plate was delicious. Especially having the Gorgonzola Dolce with the raisin and nut bread…the two flavors complimented each other well.

    1. Hi Lea Ann, I think simple is best sometimes and I wanted the delicate earthy flavor of all the mushrooms to shine. I really enjoyed shopping in Whole Foods…wish there was one near our New Hampshire home.

    1. Thank you Jessica, for your nice compliment. I think fresh thyme is one of my favorite herbs and really does go well with mushrooms. The nice thing about thyme, it is a hardy perennial that comes back each year in both my garden in New Hampshire and Maine no matter how much cold and snow we have.

    1. Hi Uru, I’m glad you liked the post. This is a dish that you could enjoy just by changing the chicken broth of vegetable or mushroom broth. Thank you for your nice comment as always.

    1. Thank you Betsy, for your nice compliment. The raisin nut bread is outstanding and comes from The Standard Baking Co. I thought about the bread for the BLT but this bread is loaded with raisins and nuts. It went perfect with the Gorgonzola Dolce with the drizzle of honey.

    1. Hi Geni, Thank you for your nice compliment. I would love to take you foraging with me…especially to find some more of the wonderful mushrooms.

    1. Hi Carol, The pasta dish really was divine…thank you very much. A nice antipasto makes a lovely meal all by itself…especially when we have so lovely crusty bread to soak up the juices from our grilled and marinated red peppers. Add the cheese and meat and you think you have died and gone to heaven. It is a perfect way to start a meal when entertaining friends as it can all be assembled ahead of time.

    1. Hi Kristy, When you wish upon a star your dreams come true…oh, it is too early in the day to wish on a star. Actually, this a a very quick meal to put together. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  10. Well, I foraged today. You made it sound so fun. But there was no “jiggity jig” when I came home. Too flippin’ tired. So, the ingredients I bought to make this mushroom pasta will wait another night. And by the way, who do I write to get mafaldine pasta shipped to this neck of the woods?

    1. You did it again, Bliss. I’m laughing out loud as I read your comment to my husband. Happy to hear that you foraged today…but oh so sorry that there was no “jiggity jig” left in you when you got home. Actually, I think it will be easy to get the mafaldine pasta. Would you believe even our market in New Hampshire carries it…Pastene brand which is very good. Hope you enjoy your pasta dish.

  11. This pasta and your mushrooms, Karen, were meant for each other. You created such a great meal, both antipasti and pasta look so very appetizing. Yum!

    1. Thank you John, for your nice compliment. I think the mafaldine pasta went so well with the mushrooms although pappardalle would be lovely as well. When is antipasti not a great way to start a meal. I’m glad you like the post.

  12. Fabulous pictures! Everything looks scrumptious! your makin’ me hungry and I just ate :/.
    I got to visit Portland while I was up in Maine a few months ago. What an adorable town! I ate at a flatbread place by the water, they had the most amazing goat cheese, mushroom and kale flatbread. Your mushroom pasta is a must try for me! thanks for sharing.

    1. Hi Daniela, Thank you for your lovely compliment. I hope you will enjoy the mushroom pasta. I’m glad to hear that you enjoyed your visit to Portland. You ate at The Flatbread Co. in Portland. I’m am familiar with it. My husband eat the the original one in Amesbury, Ma. and love it. We usually go when the weather is cold and sit in front of the big wood pizza oven and watch them make the great pizzas.

    1. Hi Marina, Thank you for your nice compliment. I’m glad you enjoyed the post. I agree with you about mushrooms…they are delicious and have such an earthy aroma.

    1. Hi Ladyfi, Thank you for your compliment. Chanterelle mushrooms are so good. I wish I could be by your side when you are picking them. Think of me when you are foraging.

  13. My favourite meal! Mafaldine (one of my favourite long pasta shape) combined with mushrooms sounds delicious. Using a variety of mushrooms makes this dish special!! My shopping is often a rush to the till. I like to read your post and remember how much I enjoyed FORAGING (before kids). Thank you for sharing your experience.

    1. Hi Rita, I’m so glad that you enjoyed the post. I admire all my readers and there are quite of few of you that know how to forage for edible mushrooms. The mafaldine pasta is such a pretty pasta that was perfect with this dish. Thank you for your nice comment.

  14. After reading the antapasta, my thought was I’d just eat it and forget the rest of the meal, then I read the entree and had a quick change of heart. I would have properly walked away from this meal miserably full.

    1. Thank you my Anonymous friend for stopping by and your comment. The antipasto is a nice meal in itself or a great way to start a meal when entering. A few bites and then on to the main pasta course.

    1. Hi Sibella, We did enjoy this meal prepared with ingredients from our day spent at the markets in Portland. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  15. I had to laugh when I read the title of your post! My mom says “home again, home again, jiggity jig” every time every time we arrive home; she’s done it since I was a child. Gave me a big smile. And the dishes in this post! Swoon! Save me a seat at your table, please!

    1. Hi Kristy, Thank you for stopping by and your nice compliment. My mother and father used to always say that too and now I do the same thing. I’ll have a seat at the table for you anytime you want to stop by.

  16. A rich trilogy Karen, and this a gorgeous recipe for gathered mushrooms! Love it (and I’d be lucky to get any if my husband ever caught sight of it!)

    1. Thank you Spree, for your nice compliment about the trilogy. I enjoyed doing it and am happy that you enjoyed the posts. This pasta was very good with the wonderful selection of mushrooms that we found in Portland.

    1. Hi Mary, We really did find a wonderful variety of mushrooms and this dish was a nice way to showcase them. I always put cheese on the table for those that can’t imagine eating pasta without it but certain dishes really don’t need it and this was one of them.

  17. I am SO jealous of that beautiful plate of mushrooms!!!! What a simple and elegant way to prepare them so you can appreciate the delicate flavors! Of course it goes without saying the antipasto plate could set on my table any day of the week! Of course it would go very quickly!

    1. Hi MJ, Don’t be jealous…this is an easy pasta dish that anyone can make. I think simple is best when you have wonderful fresh mushrooms. My husband and I often just have an antipasto plate as our entire meal. Thank you for your lovely compliment.

    1. Hi Dana, If you say all my posts look delicious, what can I say but thank you over and over again. If I do say so myself, this meal was delicious.

    1. Hi B, An antipasto plate is nice to prepare when entertaining friends…there is always something for everyone. Foraging is definitely fun. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Thank you so very much Maureen for your lovely compliment. I not only appreciate your kind words about my blog but that you enjoyed this post.

  18. Food shopping is the only kind of shopping I enjoy, so I’ve loved your foraging expedition. Mushrooms and pasta are a magical combo, and this dish looks particularly nice. I agree with you about the cheese – in fact I’m not sure I’d even add it at table. Nice post, super recipe – thanks.

    1. Hi Kitchenriffs, I’m glad that you have enjoyed the foraging adventure and the pasta recipe. I’m glad that you agree about the cheese. I think I takes away from the flavor of the mushrooms.

    1. Thank you Susan, for your nice compliment. I’m glad you enjoyed the way I finished the trilogy on foraging with the beautiful selection of mushrooms that I was able to get.

    1. Hi Claire, I’m glad that you enjoyed the way I ended my foraging adventure…the trilogy was fun to do. With such a nice assortment of mushrooms, simple is sometimes the best. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Thank you Barbara, for your lovely compliment. Knowing all the wonderful breads that you bake, I know you would have especially enjoyed the raisin and nut bread. And thank you for your comment about my pasta dish…I appreciate that.

  19. That was one of my favorite nursery rhymes 🙂 What an amazing antipasto platter and the mushroom pasta is going on my ‘to try’ list!

    1. Hi Susan, I’m always quoting the nursery rhyme, especially when we come back from a long trip. I’m glad you enjoyed the post and want to try the pasta recipe. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Hi Ruth, I’m glad you enjoyed the trilogy. The nice thing about reading a blog…the virtual pounds gained come of instantly. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  20. How have I missed this … the whole trilogy is a pretty and stunning on the same time – then it ends up in this fantastic dish. Very smart way to keep us interested. Karen, I was really in here looking for a recipe I think it’s your – but maybe not … can’t find it – it was wraps with guacamole and chicken – must have been after I returned from my trip. Totally lost the plot, but I got this 3 posts instead .. that I have missed all of. Thanks for the brilliant journey you took me on here

    1. Hi Viveka, I’m glad that you enjoyed the trilogy. It was a fun series to write and one that everyone seemed to enjoy. Thank you for your nice compliment.

    1. Hi Barbara, Most times when I go shopping for food, I don’t make my final plans for a dinner until I see what is fresh in the markets. Many times my husband comes home after I have told him what I’m planning on making for dinner to find something totally different. Thank you for your nice compliment…I’m glad you enjoyed the post.

    1. Hi Lulu, An antipasto plate is a nice way to start a meal when entertaining or can be a meal all on its own. I’m happy that you enjoyed the Blue Spoon…we did as well.

  21. Your third part of the Trilogy is just as wonderful as the first two parts – we love chanterelles In Europe an you might say that the Germans are very serious about preparing them…They pop up an a lot of restaurant menues once they become available in the markets, don´t you just love their taste?! Your Pasta look wonderful with all these wild mushrooms!

    I do not know whereabouts you are going to spend time in Germany/Austria in the fall but if you have a chance to visit the City of Hamm, you must go see the Art Exhibit entitled “Alltagsmenschen/Ordinary Peolpe” by Christel Lechner. I visited her exhibit in Rheda last week and it was just absolutely wonderful (and, of course, I blogged about it…) It really is worth a visit.

    1. Hi Andrea, I’m glad that you enjoyed my trilogy series. I always look forward to the wonderful dishes of mushrooms when we travel to Europe…especially in Germany. This fall we will be in the Black Forest and Bavaria. The furtherest north will be Baiersbronn. I did enjoy your post in regards to the exhibit…what fun.

  22. I wish I knew how to forage for mushrooms but am always too scared. In France apparently you can bring them to pharmacies to be identified! One of my favourite restaurants in Dublin has its own personal forager…

    1. Hi Jess, I wish I knew how to forage as well but since I don’t want to kill anyone I leave the foraging of mushrooms to the professionals. I just do my foraging in the markets. Thank you for your nice comment.

    1. Hi Charles, I really was lucky to find such a wonderful selection of mushrooms which I love. The meal was so delicious. Thank you for your nice compliment.

  23. I love mushrooms and your mushroom pasta looks so delicious! I could just eat my screen!
    Maybe I will find some good mushrooms at the local market. Thanks for taking us on your forage journey!

    1. Hi Ming, I’m happy to hear that you enjoyed the foraging adventure. I hope you will be able to find a nice selection of mushrooms at your market.

    1. Thank you Teresa, for your nice compliment. The pasta dish was a nice way to use the wonderful mushrooms that were available at the market.

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