Supermarkets would have you believe it’s always mushroom season. It is—for white buttons, maybe. But the first cool fall days bring feathery maitakes, meaty oysters, and other flavorful varieties worth seeking out at the farmers’ market. Whichever one you pick, all they’ll need is a quick sear in a hot pan before being tossed into a creamy pasta sauce.
- 4 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil
- 1 lb. mixed mushrooms (such as maitake, oyster, crimini, and/or shiitake), torn into bite-size pieces
- Kosher salt
- 2 medium shallots, finely chopped
- 1 lb. spaghetti or bucatini
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ⅓ cup finely chopped parsley
- Zest and juice of ½ lemon
- 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- ½ oz. Parmesan, finely grated (about ½ cup), plus more for serving
- Freshly ground black pepper
Heat 2 Tbsp. oil in a large pot over medium-high. Cook half of mushrooms in a single layer, undisturbed, until edges are brown and starting to crisp, about 3 minutes. Give mushrooms a toss and continue to cook, tossing occasionally, until all sides are brown and crisp, about 5 minutes more. Using a slotted spoon, transfer mushrooms to a plate; season with salt. Repeat with remaining 2 Tbsp. oil and mushrooms and more salt.
Reduce heat to medium-low and return all of the mushrooms to the pot. Add shallots and cook, stirring often, until shallots are translucent and softened, about 2 minutes.
Meanwhile, cook pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water, stirring occasionally, until very al dente, about 2 minutes less than package directions.
Using tongs, transfer pasta to pot with mushrooms and add cream and 1 cup pasta cooking liquid. Increase heat to medium, bring to a simmer, and cook, tossing constantly, until pasta is al dente and liquid is slightly thickened, about 3 minutes.
Remove pot from heat. Add lemon zest and juice, parsley, butter, 1/2 oz. Parmesan, and lots of pepper and toss to combine. Taste and season with more salt if needed.
Divide pasta among bowls and top with more Parmesa