Our ragout has the earthy rusticity of a rich fall stew, and illustrates the extraordinary meatiness both in flavor and texture of wild mushrooms. It is so versatile and can be paired with almost anything. We served ours with creamy polenta and hearty beef meatballs.
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Prep the Vegetables
Preheat the oven to 375F. Roughly chop the garlic. Rinse and roughly chop the parsley. Rinse and slice the mushrooms in to thin slices. Peel the onion. Cut the onion in half and dice into a small dice.
Soak the Mushrooms
In a small pot, bring 2 cups of water to a boil. Add the porcini and cremini mushrooms and remove from heat. Let steep for 5 minutes. Strain the mushrooms, reserving 1 cup of mushroom liquid for the polenta.
Make the Ragout
Heat a large sauté over medium heat. Add 1 Tbsp. olive oil to the pan. Add the onion, half the garlic, and soaked mushrooms to the pan. Cook until the onions are translucent and the mushrooms are fork tender. When vegetables are cooked, add the diced tomatoes (with juice from can) to the pan. Simmer the sauce on low for 6-8 minutes, or until the sauce reduces a bit. Season with sugar, salt and pepper to taste.
Prep & Cook the Meatballs
In a large bowl, combine ground beef, remaining garlic, half the Asiago, half the parsley, and season with a pinch of salt and pepper. Roll in to 6 equal-sized meatballs. Place on a prepared baking sheet and cook for 12-15 minutes, or until the meatballs are browned and firm to the touch. Internal temperature should be 155F degrees.
Cook the Polenta
Bring the 1 cup mushroom liquid and 3 cups water to a boil in a large pot. When water is boiling, slowly whisk in the polenta. Cook on low for 5 minutes, whisking constantly, or until polenta is creamy and soft. Whisk in 2 Tsp. olive oil and season with salt and pepper to taste.
Plate the Dish
Place a dollop of polenta in the center of the plate. Lay three meatballs in the polenta. Top with mushroom ragout. Garnish with remaining parsley and Asiago cheese.
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