Nicholas Roberts Gourmet Bistro is a restaurant with a lot of heart and some really well prepared food. On a recent dinner excursion, we stumbled upon a seasonal pasta special that I knew wouldn't stay on the menu for long, and yet I could envision myself craving it on a weekly basis. I considered lobbying for a permanent spot on the NRGB menu, but some meals are more ethereal in nature. Instead, Chef Rob Troilo handed the recipe over to CTbites to enable future enjoyment in our own homes. If you don't want to make your own pasta, go buy it fresh, and take advantage of the beautiful asparagus currently available at our local Farmers' Markets. Let us know how you like Nicholas Roberts' House Made Whole Wheat & Porcini Fettuccine with Artichokes & Asparagus.
NRGB's House Made Whole Wheat & Porcini Fettuccine
Note: this recipe was scaled down from a recipe developed at the restaurant and not all ingredient quantities divided evenly. Therefore, some slight adjusting to the olive oil or flour may be needed to achieve a pasta dough of the right consistency.
• 1 ¼ Cups Whole Wheat Flour (A finely milled flour such as Heckers brand is needed to achieve the proper results)
• ½ Cup All Purpose Flour
• ¼ Cup Ground Dried Porcini Mushrooms (we use a coffee grinder)
• 4 Egg Yolks
• 1 Large Egg
• 1 Tablespoons Olive Oil
• 1 Tablespoons Milk
• ½ Teaspoon Salt
12 Baby Artichokes, trimmed and blanched in boiling water, cut into ¼‘s
¾ -Cup Cooked Fresh or Frozen Peas
1 Bunch Asparagus, peeled & roasted and cut into 1” lenghts
2 Tablespoons minced garlic
2 Tablespoons minced Shallots
1 cup Ricotta Cheese
6 Sprigs of Parsley leaves or Chervil
1. Combine both flours, salt and ground dried porcini in the bowl of a standing kitchen mixer. Then create a well in the middle of the dried ingredients by pushing them to the sides of the bowl.
2. In a separate bowl whisk together the eggs, olive oil and milk until just combined. Pour the wet ingredients into the well and using the dough hook, incorporate the wet ingredients into the dried ingredients at low speed.
3. Once all the ingredients have been incorporated, move the speed to medium to knead the dough for about 5 minutes. (Note some kitchen mixers may not be able to handle this dough without striping the gears. Therefore, start at slow speed and if the gears are grinding you’ll need to accomplish this step by using a fork to gently pull the sides of the well into the wet ingredients.)
4. The Dough will transform into a shaggy mass and then into a flaky one. Once the dough becomes flaky raise the speed to medium and knead the dough for about 10 minutes. Again paying attention to not strip the gears or burn out the motor.
5. After 10 minutes remove the dough from the machine, place on a floured surface and vigorously knead by hand for another 5 minutes. The dough is ready when the consistency is smooth and, when stretched, pulls back.
6. Let the dough rest, refrigerated and double wrapped in plastic to keep it from drying out for at least 30 minutes and best overnight. Bring the dough to room temperature before proceeding.
7. Roll out the dough according to your pasta machines instructions for a fettuccine
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil for the pasta.
2. In a sauté pan large enough to hold all the ingredients, sauté the artichokes over medium heat in two tablespoons of olive oil. Lightly brown the artichokes on all sides, allowing them to sit in the pan long enough to achieve color. Once the artichokes are browned, add the garlic and shallots. Continue to sauté until fragrant. Add the peas and asparagus, season to taste with salt and pepper and set aside.
3. Once the water has come to a rapid boil, place the pasta in the water, continuously stirring to avoid clumping. Cook the pasta until al dente, approximately 90 seconds. Remove from the water, drain and drizzle with olive oil.
4. Warm the vegetables over medium heat and then toss with the pasta. Adjust the seasoning and serve, garnished with a quenelle of ricotta cheese and a sprig of parsley or chervil leaves