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Lamb and Wild Mushroom Rigatoni

Back when we lived in New York, I had this dish (or one close to it) at an Italian restaurant on the Upper West Side. I like trying to recreate dishes. I’ve played with this one for a while. So it’s time to share. It’s dead easy, will take less than an hour and feeds two with leftovers for lunch tomorrow or, with a salad and bread can feed four.

It uses lamb broth which isn’t easy to find. Few markets in North America carry it, not even in cubes. Either make your own (this recipe from Ramsey is good) or find an online supplier. In a pinch substitute chicken or veggie stock.


olive oil

1/2 pound of lamb — shoulder works best, cut into bite-sized slices or cubes and dust with salt and pepper

1 onion, halved and sliced

1 garlic clove, smashed and chopped

2 sprigs of rosemary

1 pound or so of mushrooms — a mix of fresh white or crimini ‘shrooms and reconstituted dried wild ones such as chanterelles, pine, hedgehog and/or porcinis. Slice whole mushrooms and chop large pieces of wild. 

1/2 c white wine

1/2 c lamb broth

the mushroom soaking liquid, strained

2 T flour

a large bunch of a “green” — any. Chard, kale, spinach and collard all work. Each gives a slightly different flavor but all are good. Mustard greens are a bit strong but can be used.

chopped parsley for garnish

1/2 pound of rigatoni (or similarly shaped pasta) 


brown lamb in a T of olive oil and the rosemary — remove lamb (leave rosemary) and set aside

in same pan, sauté onions, garlic and mushrooms till they begin to caramelize (add olive oil if needed) — remove rosemary

add the flour and stir to mix

deglaze with wine and stir, scraping up the fond

add lamb broth and mushroom soaking liquid, stir, scraping up fond

return lamb

add greens

cover and simmer while cooking the pasta

combine everything and sprinkle with chopped parsley

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