This looks like a plate of cheesy pasta, doesn’t it? It tastes like it, too! Instead of wheat pasta, this fabulous dish uses noodles made from hearts of palm that are extremely low carb and gluten free. I’ve tried various low carb noodle substitutes, but these are the best, by far. (I used Palmini linguine noodles for this recipe.) Hearts of palm noodles have very little flavor on their own, but they absorb and take on the flavor of whatever sauce or other ingredients you pair them with...in this case, three types of creamy cheese, smoky pancetta or bacon, earthy mushrooms and spicy radicchio! You think you’re eating cheesy pasta, when in reality you’re eating mostly vegetables! If you haven’t given hearts of palm noodles a try, this incredible baked linguine recipe will win you over!
Low Carb Linguine Al Forno (Baked Linguini) with Pancetta, Mushrooms and Radicchio
Makes 4 servings
4 ounces pancetta or bacon, chopped
4 ounces shiitake or baby Bella mushrooms, cleaned and sliced
1/8 teaspoon sea salt
1-1/2 cups (about 1 small head) radicchio, finely chopped
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 cup grated parmesan, divided
1/2 cup fontina cheese, roughly shredded
1/4 cup crumbled gluten free Gorgonzola or blue cheese
3 leaves fresh sage, chopped (or 1 teaspoon fresh thyme)
Salt and pepper to taste
16 ounces hearts of palm noodles, linguini style (cut into smaller pieces, optional)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1. Before preparing the dish, cut up the hearts of palm noodles into 1-inch pieces (optional), rinse with water and then place the drained noodles into a large bowl. Cover with milk (or your favorite milk alternative) and allow to sit for 30 minutes. Drain and discard milk and rinse the noodles with water again before proceeding. (This step is a tip I received from the manufacturer of the Palmini hearts of palm noodles I used for this recipe and is optional, but it helps to mellow the flavor of the noodles.)
2. Preheat the oven to 500 degrees Fahrenheit. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to boil.
3. Remove the stems from the mushrooms and reserve for another use. Slice the mushroom caps into 1/4-inch slices; set aside.
4. Heat the pancetta in a large skillet over medium heat until well browned and crisp. Remove with a slotted spoon onto a plate lined with paper towels; set aside.
5. Add the mushrooms to the hot oil in the skillet and sprinkle with 1/8 teaspoon salt. Saute over medium heat, stirring frequently, until they are cooked through and beginning to brown, 3-5 minutes.
6. In a large bowl, combine the mushrooms, pancetta, radicchio, cream, fontina, 1/4 cup parmesan, Gorgonzola or blue cheese crumbles, sage or thyme, and season with salt and pepper to taste.
7. Boil the hearts of palm noodles for a few minutes until hot, drain and add to the ingredients in the mixing bowl. Toss well to combine. Divide the noodle mixture equally among four buttered individual gratin dishes or pour the entire mixture into a buttered casserole dish. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1/4 cup parmesan cheese and drizzle with the 2 tablespoons of olive oil. Bake in the hot, preheated oven until bubbly and browned on top, about 20 minutes. Serve immediately.
Nutritional Information per serving: 432 calories, 8.1 g carbohydrates (3.9 g dietary fiber, 1.2 g sugars), 42 g total fat (21.9 g saturated fat, 0 g trans fat), 127 mg cholesterol, 991 mg sodium, 243 mg calcium, 155 mg potassium, 1 mg iron, 17.1 g protein. Net carbs per serving: 4.2 grams
Photos and recipe by Kathy Sheehan, copyright 2019
All rights reserved. Please do not duplicate without the author’s permission.