Food & Drink

Mushroom Marsala Over Ricotta Polenta

January 22, 2020

Mushroom Marsala Over Ricotta Polenta

My daughter fell in love with a chicken marsala pasta dish she had at a restaurant the other night. She had never had marsala sauce and loved the way the mushrooms tasted in it. When my kids discover new flavors that they enjoy them, I take note. I realized that I could use marsala sauce as a base for a gluten-free vegetarian dish that the whole family would love. Pasta would be replaced with polenta (a family favorite) and the chicken would be replaced with meaty mushrooms (maitake mushrooms).

This recipe has 3 parts. First, we will make the mushroom marsala sauce, then the polenta and lastly the pan-fried maitake mushrooms. Don’t get nervous, each step takes just a few minutes.

Mushroom Marsala Ingredients

  • 3 tbs of olive oil
  • 1 lb of sliced baby bella (crimini) mushrooms
  • 2 large shallots sliced
  • 8 oz of cherry tomatoes halved
  • 1/4 cup of flour
  • 1 cup of marsala wine
  • 1 tbs of butter
  • 1 cup of mushroom or vegetable stock
  • 1 tsp of salt

Ricotta Polenta Ingredients

Pan-Fried Maitake Mushrooms

  • 1/2 lb of Maitake (Hen-of-Woods) mushrooms
  • 1.5 tbs olive oil

Let’s Cook!

Step 1-Mushroom Marsala

In a large skillet (the largest you have) heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the shallots, tomatoes, and mushrooms and cook until the vegetables are tender. Once the vegetables are tender add salt and flour. Stir the flour into the vegetable until the flour is evenly incorporated.

Next, deglaze the pan with Marsala wine and let cook for 2 minutes. Add butter and mushroom stock and let cook until the sauce reduces and thickens. Reduce to low heat and let sit.

Sauteed shallots and mushrooms

Step 2- Creamy Polenta Ricotta

Follow the polenta instructions for preparing two cups of polenta. When your polenta is done, add the ricotta, grated cheese, and salt. Stir to incorporate all the ingredients.

Tip: To avoid lumps wait until the water comes to a boil, stir the boiling water with a wooden spoon and then slowly start pouring in the polenta. Once you’ve added all the polenta, reduce the heat quickly to a simmer.

Step 3- Pan-Fried Maitake Mushrooms

After you’ve divided the mushrooms into 4 portions. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet until it is almost smoking then add the maitake mushrooms. Cook the mushrooms on medium-high heat without moving them for three minutes or until they are a deep golden brown (see below for color reference), then flip them and cook for another 3 minutes.

Pan seared maitake mushrooms should be a deep golden brown

Tip: Be sure not to crowd the mushrooms. If your pan is not large enough, cook the mushrooms in two batches.

Let’s Plate

In a bowl ladle a generous portion of polenta, then the mushroom marsala and finally top it with a portion of the maitake mushrooms. Garnish with chopped parsley and serve immediately.