Mushroom Penne with Asparagus and Bay Leaf Brown Butter

collaboration with Banza


Makes 4 servings
  • 1 box Banza Penne Pancetta
  • 4 oz. Diced Pancetta
  • 16 Spears Asparagus
  • 6 oz. Cremini Mushrooms
  • 4 each Spring Onion
  • 3 oz. Black & Bolyard® Bay Leaf Brown Butter
  • Sherry Vinegar, to taste
  • Black Pepper, to taste
  • Sea Salt, to taste


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Season the water liberally with salt.
  2. Heat a large saute pan over medium-low heat. Add pancetta to the pan and stir occasionally to render the fat.
  3. Meanwhile, trim and discard the bottoms off of the asparagus and cut into approximately 1 1/2″ pieces. Set aside.
  4. Rinse the mushrooms to remove any grit, then dry and slice into 1/4″ inch pieces.
  5. Once the pancetta has rendered and is slightly crisp, add the mushrooms into the same pan and begin to cook until the water is released and has evaporated. Lightly season with sea salt.
  6. Clean and cut the spring onion into thin slices. Add the bottom white portion of the spring onion to the pan with mushrooms and pancetta. Reserve the sliced green tops for later. Sweat all of this down together.
  7. Using a bowl, prepare an ice bath. Blanch the asparagus in the boiling water. Cook for 2-4 minutes until crisp-tender, depending on the thickness. Remove from water and shock in the ice bath to stop the cooking.
  8. Drop the box of Banza pasta into the same boiling salted water and stir occasionally to prevent sticking.
  9. Simultaneously, add the Black & Bolyard® Bay Leaf Brown Butter in the pan containing the pancetta, mushroom, and spring onion. Add the greens of the onion and blanched asparagus now as well. Stir to incorporate.
  10. When the pasta is slightly al dente, strain from the boiling water and add to pan with a few splashes of the pasta water from the pot. Cook for another minute to meld the components and toss to coat the pasta.
  11. Adjust seasoning with salt and sherry vinegar in the pan, then transfer to bowls. With a peppermill, crack a generous amount of black pepper over the top of the pasta. 
Photo by Minna Lee

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