Rodney Dunn’s Mushroom Cannelloni
Serves: 6 -8
Nat and I did a cooking class with Rodney Dunn a few years ago when we spent a week in Hobart.
It was an awesome afternoon; true paddock to plate stuff, where every ingredient came from his farm. We cooked in his large country kitchen and then ate lunch in a wonderful dining room surrounded by cookbooks and sampling some amazing Tasmanian pinots.
An afternoon that Nat and I still talk about.
Rodney Dunn’s food is about body, flavour and honesty.
This salad of his is a great example.
This mushroom cannelloni is an amazing example.
We’ve slightly adapted the recipe by blitzing the mushrooms and combining them with the ricotta and I think this made a textural improvement on keeping the mushrooms whole.
Though its the flavours that cannot be doubted.
The homemade pasta is so good, you’re eating something elevated far above a cannelloni with tubes from the shops.
And the filling and the Béchamel!
This would be a signature dish in a good Italian restaurant.
Hitting a pasta homerun is my favourite thing and hands-down this pasta is a homerun.
580gm ricotta, drained
2 eggs, lightly beaten
100gm Parmesan, finely grated
1/4 c extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
4 garic cloves, thinly sliced
3 spring onions (white part only), thinly sliced
300gm Swiss brown mushhrooms, coarsely chopped
250gm large flat mushrooms, coarsely chopped
6 sage leaves, thinly sliced
1 tsp thyme leaves
30gm dried porcini mushrooms, soaked in 200ml warm water for 10 minutes, drained and soaking liquid reserved
1 1/2 c plain flour
1/2 c coarse semolina
For drizzling: olive oil
100gm butter, coarsely chopped
1/3 c plain flour
550ml warm milk
1/4 c finely grated Parmesan
Pinch of finely grated nutmeg, or to taste
- For pasta dough, pulse flour and semolina in a food processor until combined. With motor running, add eggs, then gradually add 20ml iced water and process until mixture just comes together. Remove dough, knead until smooth (5 – 7 minutes), wrap in plastic wrap and res at room temperature (1 hour). Divide pasta into four, then using a pasta roller, roll until ou have pasta 2mm in thickness. Cut pasta into ten 12cm x 15cm pieces. Cook in a large saucepan of boiling salted water over high heat until al dente (1 minute), drain and refresh, drizzle with a little oil, set aside.
- Preheat oven to 180c. Press ricotta through a fine sieve into a large bowl, then combine with eggs and 75gm Parmesan, season to taste and set aside.
- Heat extra virgin olive oil in a large frying pan over medium heat, add garlic and spring onion, sauté until starting to soften (2 – 3 minutes). Add the mushrooms and herbs and sauté until tender (8 – 10 minutes). Add prorcini and soaking liquid, simmer until liquid has been reduced (7 – 10 minutes), season to taste and set aside to cool. When cool, blitz in a food processor until consistency of mince and stir in with the ricotta mixture.
- For béchamel, heat butter in a saucepan over medium heat until foaming (1-2 minutes), add flour and stir until mixture is light brown in colour (2-3 minutes). Whisk in warm milk, a little at a time, and stir until beginning to bubble (2-3 minutes), remove from heat, add parmesan, season to taste with salt, freshly ground black pepper and nutmeg, set aside.
- Spoon ricotta into a piping bag fitted with a 2cm-plain nozzle, pipe across the middle of each piece of pasta, top with mushrooms and roll to enclose. Arrange cannelloni in a 25cm x 35cm buttered baking dish. Spoon béchamel on top, scatter with remaining parmesan and bake until golden and warmed through (30-40 minutes).