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Caramelized Leek and Mushroom Gruyere Pasta

Course Main Course
Cuisine Italian
Keyword pasta, vegetarian
Total Time 45 minutes
Servings 4
Author Cherry on My Sundae


  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 3 tablespoons butter divided
  • 3 medium leeks tops removed, cut in half and thinly sliced
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon granulated sugar
  • cup sherry wine
  • 8 ounces oyster mushrooms
  • 4 garlic cloves minced
  • 2 sage leaves
  • ¾ cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 1 lb fettuccine
  • 1 cup reserved pasta water
  • ½ cup grated gruyere
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ¼ cup toasted pine nuts


  • Heat 2 tablespoons olive oil and 2 tablespoons butter in a large saute pan over medium heat. Add sliced leeks and season with ½ teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon sugar. Cook until golden and caramelized, about 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. If the pan gets too dry, add 1-2 tablespoon water.
  • Add sherry and continue to cook until the wine has reduced. Remove leeks from the pan and set them aside.
  • In the same pan, melt another tablespoon of butter. Spread mushrooms in an even layer, giving them plenty of space in between. Let them sit until browned, about 4 minutes. Flip and continue to brown on the other side. Season with salt and pepper.
  • Add minced garlic and sage and saute for 1 minute. Add back leeks along with ¾ cup heavy cream, balsamic vinegar, and lemon zest. Bring to a simmer and continue to cook until thickened, about 2-3 minutes. Season the sauce with salt and pepper.
  • Meanwhile, cook fettuccine until al dente. Reserve 1 cup of the cooking pasta water.
  • Add fettuccine, 1 cup reserved pasta water, gruyere, and black pepper to the sauce, tossing to coat. Simmer for 2 minutes or until cheese is melted and the pasta is well coated. Give a final seasoning with salt and pepper.
  • Portion pasta into 4 bowls and garnish with toasted pine nuts. Serve immediately.