Dried porcini mushrooms are packed full of flavor so a little goes a long way. I’m lucky, whenever I’m running low I get a friend in Italy to send me some. If you don’t have an Italian connection they’re still worth the hefty price tag, even if it’s only for special occasions. Be careful though, the market has been flooded with low quality impostors that lack the distinctive intense flavor and have a slightly bitter after-taste. Look for porcini that are imported from Italy or France and avoid those sold in bulk of unknown origin. The most common use for these mushrooms is probably risotto, but sometimes I like to use them in red pasta sauce. When I do I always save the soaking water to use for risotto the next day.

Tomato Sauce with Porcini Mushrooms


2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil

1 small onion, chopped

1 ounce dried porcini mushrooms

2 cups strained tomatoes (no salt or citric acid added)

Salt to taste

2 tablespoons fresh flat-leaf parsley, chopped

Freshly grated Parmesan cheese for serving


Place Global Sun Oven out to preheat.

Soak mushrooms in hot water for 20 minutes. Drain (save soaking water for future use) and chop.

Heat oil in a sauce pan over medium high heat, add onion and saute, stirring often until it begins to soften. Add chopped porcini, strained tomato, and salt. Stir, cover, and transfer to Sun Oven for about 40 minutes. Remove from Sun Oven, stir in parsley. Serve over pasta with Parmesan cheese.

Makes enough sauce for 1 pound of pasta.

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