The past two years have taught me that spending time outside is a very important part of being a warm, upbeat, charming person—the kind of person who never hits her snooze alarm four times and then wonders why she’s always in a rush. Recently, I’ve been trying to take as many stupid walks as possible for my stupid mental health (a funny/wonderful TikTok trend from over the winter). It’s not an exorcism, but even so, it seems very similar.

Simplest Mushroom Pasta

The majority of the time when I go to the Greenmarket, I end up buying whatever appealed to me that day and bringing it home. Most recently, I bought spicy arugula, pinto potatoes, fresh flowers, and a bag of fresh cremini mushrooms. The recipe calls for 1 pound of cremini mushrooms, which is the size bag I buy them in, but if you have 1.5 pounds, that would also work extremely well. You can use a variety of mushrooms, just slice them thin and season them carefully.

 

Pasta should be cooked in a big pot of boiling, extremely salted water for 1 to 2 minutes less than the package directions. Before draining the pot, set aside 1 cup of the pasta boiling water.

In the meantime, heat your biggest sauté pan on high. Add the butter and olive oil after they’re heated. When the butter has melted, add the mushrooms as evenly as you can, and leave them alone for about 3 minutes, or until they are browned on the underside. Garlic, salt, and pepper generously sprinkled on top (seasoning is key here) and stirred in. Turn down the heat to medium-high, stir occasionally, and cook the mushrooms for about 5 minutes, or until they are soft and tender and any liquid has been cooked off. As you whisk, simmer the marsala until it is completely gone. The mushroom mixture should be extremely well-seasoned at this stage, so give it a taste.

Add the drained pasta and half of the reserved pasta water, stirring constantly for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta has absorbed the majority of the liquid. If required, add additional reserved pasta water to maintain a slight sauciness. Add the crème fraîche after taking the pan off the heat. [If using heavy cream, I’d simmer it on the burner for 30 to 60 seconds because it’s thinner] Finish with cheese and chives after adjusting the seasoning if necessary. Eat immediately.