Fettuccine with Porcini, Sausage, and Cream

Did you know October 25 is World Pasta Day? I didn’t until today. For us, almost every day is pasta day. There are countless varieties and even more sauces, and we like them all. I’ve written before on this blog that my love for Italian cooking initiated from the books of Biba Caggiano. I have almost all of her books, and I have cooked many of the recipes in them. But not all, and today’s pasta is a dish that I had never tried yet, even though it’s in the first of Biba’s books I have owned for 15 years now. I wish now I had tried it sooner, because it is really good!

Gramigna is a special kind of homemade local pasta from Bologna. Gramigna are often served wit sausage and cream, and Biba was inspired by that for the sauce in this recipe. As you need a special tool to make gramigna, we prepared fresh fettuccine instead.

The flavors of the porcini mushrooms, sausage, wine, cream, saffron, and parsley all blend together to form one delicious sauce that is just great over fresh pasta. If you don’t make fresh pasta yourself, then at least serve this over store-bought fresh pasta. Here’s my version, adapted from Biba, of  very tasty pasta dish.


For 2 servings

20 grams (.7 oz) dried porcini mushrooms

200 grams (7 oz) pork sausage (preferably sweet Italian)

30 grams (2 Tbsp) butter

125 ml (1/2 cup) dry white wine

125 ml (1/2 cup) cream (35% fat)

1 Tbsp chopped fresh flat leaf parsley

pinch of powdered saffron

salt and freshly ground black pepper

2 eggs

200 grams (1 1/4 cup) semolina flour (semola di grano duro rimacinata)

freshly grated parmigiano reggiano


Use the semolina flour and eggs to make fresh fettucine.

Soak the dried porcini mushrooms in 200 ml (5/6 cup) of hot water for 15 minutes.

Remove the sausage meat from the casings and chop it finely.

Melt the butter in a frying pan. Add the sausage meat and cook over medium heat, using two wooden spatulas to break apart the meat.

Keep cooking until the meat starts to sizzle and is nicely browned. A bit of the browned meat should be stuck to the bottom of the pan. Deglaze the pan with the white wine.

Use a wooden spatula to scrape the browned bits from the bottom to get their flavor into the sauce.

Drain the porcini mushrooms. Reserve the liquid and filter it through a cheese cloth or kitchen paper.

Cook until the wine has nearly evaporated.

Add the mushrooms and the mushroom liquid to the pan.

Cook over medium heat until most of the mushroom liquid has reduced.

Now add the cream.

Add the parsley and saffron and season with salt and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. Stir to mix.

Cook over low heat until the sauce has a medium thick consistency. Turn off the heat. Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Cook the fresh fettuccine in boiling salted water for a few minutes until al dente. Drain the fettuccine and add to the sauce with some freshly grated parmigiano reggiano.

Toss to mix.

Serve on warm plates, sprinkled with some more parmigiano.

Wine pairing

Because of the cream this is great with a full-bodied buttery chardonnay or similar white. A supple medium-bodied creamy red should also work.

22 thoughts on “Fettuccine with Porcini, Sausage, and Cream

  1. Nice post, Stefan. Looks and sounds fabulous. How can you possibly go wrong with porcini, pork, saffron and cream??? Then, to take it over the top, you make fresh pasta. I guess you convinced me, we’re having pasta for dinner tonight. 😉 I even saw some fresh porcinis at the market last week although they definitely are pricey.


      1. I went there in 2009 and it was the best Italian I’ve had in the USA. Unfortunately she wasn’t around personally, but I did chat with her husband. I made a detour via Sacramento on my way to San Francisco just to eat there. Was well worth it, sort of a pilgrimage.


  2. Great photos, recipe and instruction!

    The saffron is an unexpected twist – it must be lovely with the wine, cream, wine, parsley, mushrooms and sausage. I do love a subtle hint of saffron! This meal looks incredibly elegant – yet somehow hearty, as well.

    Serve on warm plates and sprinkle with more cheese – yes, please! Nice call! 🙂


  3. This is such a great sounding dish, Stephan. The list of ingredients alone is drool-worthy and that final photo has me reconsidering my plans for tonight’s dinner. 🙂


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