Parmigiano Reggiano in the Undergrowth: Top Chef Recipes with Mushrooms and Truffle

Alessandra Meldolesi


copertina parmigiano funghi ok

From Enrico Cerea to Massimiliano Mascia, up to Riccardo Agostini, chefs reveal their precious recipes to pair Parmigiano Reggiano with the treasures of the undergrowth. The extra trick? Pay attention to the aging! Here's how to make the dishes in detail.

Autumn, the time for mushrooms and truffles, long cooking times, precious wines, and lavish feasts. Parmigiano Reggiano, a versatility champion, is also present at this gathering: it brings richness and animal proteins to enhance the pure scent of truffles while generously doubling the umami of porcini and champignon mushrooms. Recipes have always emerged like mushrooms in the notebooks of home cooks and chef books, as these ingredients are closely connected on the palate and on maps. Chicco Cerea from Da Vittorio in Brusaporto, Massimiliano Mascia from San Domenico in Imola, and Riccardo Agostini from Piastrino in Pennabilli have created three original appetizers that seal a love affair.

parmigiano autunno 2


"For me, mushrooms are something ordinary: they're here in every season, just like truffles. From spring morels and sponge mushrooms to porcini, chanterelles, ovoli, and drumsticks with the first rains. Now, we gather from foraging, practiced with permits firsthand or by family members, chanterelles, and morel mushrooms. But it's an area of the Apennines, Montefeltro, where there's also a lot of truffle, all the way to Acqualagna, of every variety and almost always available"

il piastrino ricette con parmigiano chef Agostini 3

"Even the younger siblings are pleasant. This preparation with macerations and fermentations, which enhance the minerality and natural savoriness of the mushroom, is smoothed by the sweetness of Parmigiano Reggiano zabaglione. And it's a zero waste recipe, thanks to the soy that adds further character. As for the cheese, we reach 40 months for the one served at the cart, to be tasted in flakes; while in the kitchen, we go from 24 to 30, for a more or less incisive flavor. Now it's an element that distinguishes Italian taste, at home and in the restaurant."

Aged Porcino, Parmigiano Reggiano zabaglione, snail, forest soy

il piastrino ricette con parmigiano chef Agostini 1 1          

Ingredients for 4 people

  • 4 porcini mushrooms (160 g each)
  • 50 g Parmigiano Reggiano (30 months aged)
  • 120 g snail pulp
  • 3 organic eggs
  • 50 ml milk
  • 1 shallot
  • 2 small garlic cloves
  • 4 champignons
  • 50 ml Anice Varnelli
  • 5 g mushroom herb or marjoram
  • 5 g fennel flowers and leaves
  • 50 ml elderberry vinegar
  • 50 g butter
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and white pepper

For the mushroom soy 

  • 200 g champignons
  • 40 g salt


Clean the porcini mushrooms and remove the stem tips, which will be used for the sauce.

Season them with oil, honey, and a little vinegar, let them marinate covered for 24 hours, then steam them at 80 °C for 10 minutes and let them cool to room temperature. Alternatively, pass them in the Ocoo fermenter for 1.5 hours in honey glass function.

Clean the mushroom trimmings, finely grind them, season with 20% of their weight in salt, then pass them through a sieve inside a cheesecloth and let them sit at room temperature (26 °C) for about 2 days, pressing to extract the sauce.

Prepare the sauce with the porcini trimmings and champignon stems. Cut them finely, sauté with a little oil, chopped shallot, and garlic, then add the mushrooms and cook until the vegetable water evaporates. Pour in 100 ml of water, bring to a boil, adjust salt and pepper, blend to obtain a fine cream. Pass it through a sieve, pour it into a saucepan, and complete by adding Anice Varnelli to taste (it should be delicately notable on the palate).

Cook the already boiled snails in a butter base with a little shallot and garlic; let them cook gently for 20 minutes, adding a little water to prevent the bottom from burning and to make the final result creamy. Complete by seasoning with salt, white pepper, flowers, and aromatic herbs. If possible, smoke lightly before plating.

Prepare the Parmigiano Reggiano zabaglione by combining egg yolks in the ThermoMix, pasteurizing at 75 °C for 8 minutes. Meanwhile, with milk and grated Parmigiano Reggiano, form a cold cream. Gradually add it to the zabaglione, so as not to deflate it, and keep it warm.

Place a bit of sauce at the base of the plate, then place the matured porcini, steamed and scalloped on top. Surround with snails, drizzle with 30-month Parmigiano Reggiano zabaglione, and finish with slices of mushrooms, bitter mountain herbs, and forest soy.


Chicco Cerea

"The combination of cheese and mushrooms dates back to ancient times. One of the best pairings is undoubtedly with Parmigiano Reggiano, but unlike some time ago, we are much more attentive to various aging stages. In this case, we use a young one, aged 16 to 18 months, because it is sweeter and rounder and because it better complements the forest scents of the mushroom itself. These are very tasty elements that bind together. So important and precious that to fully savor them, they must be balanced and dosed in the right way."

Potato cappuccino, porcini mushroom, Parmigiano Reggiano e truffle

da vittorioo cappuccino di patate e funghi

Ingredients for 4 people

For the potato foam

  • 200 g potatoes
  • 800 g cream
  • 50 g potato cooking water
  • 20 g extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

For the mushroom

  • 400 g porcini mushrooms
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 100 g veal stock
  • 10 g chopped parsley
  • extra virgin olive oil
  • salt and pepper

For the Parmigiano Reggiano fondue 

  • 100 g of Parmigiano Reggiano
  • Fresh cream as needed

For garnishing

  • Cocoa
  • 20 g of truffle


For the foam, boil the potatoes, blend them while still warm with the other ingredients until smooth, and pour into a siphon. Close and load with 2 whipped cream cartridges, then store in a bain-marie at 65 °C.

For the fondue, cook the diced Parmigiano Reggiano with cream in a double boiler until smooth and homogeneous.

Clean the mushrooms, cut them into pieces, and sauté in a pan with garlic and a tablespoon of oil. Add the veal stock, adjust salt and pepper, and complete the cooking. Sprinkle with parsley.

Before serving, arrange the mushrooms at the bottom of a cappuccino cup and add a layer of potato foam, as if it were whipped cream. Garnish with a little cocoa and a few truffle slices.


massimiliano mascia

"This recipe is a tribute to Castel del Rio, a village in the Apennines renowned for chestnuts, where you can gather many porcini mushrooms and, with a bit of luck, even white truffle. I therefore  recreated the undergrowth habitat with a sponge for moss, porcini cream, truffle slices, and Parmigiano Reggiano wafers shaped like chestnut leaves. Like a landscape on a plate. They are all earth products that simple and excellent results together with Parmigiano Reggiano. They seem born to be together. In this case, we use a 24-month cheese, as for fillings and risottos, but we don't give up the 30 months for cheese tastings or finishing in flakes."

Castel del Rio

massimiliano mascia ricetta parmigiano 1

For the Parmigiano Reggiano wafers

  • 150 g chestnut flour
  • 150 g Parmigiano Reggiano
  • 40 g egg white
  • 40 g butter

For the porcini cream

  • 200 g porcini mushrooms, diced
  • 1 shallot
  • oil, thyme, salt, white wine as needed
  • 100 ml cream

For the broccoli sponge

  • 1/2 broccoli
  • 30 g potato starch
  • 1 whole egg
  • Parmigiano Reggiano
  • salt, oil, rosemary, chili

For the chestnut

  • 300 g chestnuts
  • 2 bay leaves
  • milk as needed

For the finishing touch 

  • 1 white truffle 


For the wafer, knead all the ingredients, roll out in a chestnut leaf-shaped mold, and bake in the oven at 170 °C for 7-8 minutes.

For the cream, chop the shallot and sauté it in a pan with thyme and oil, add the porcini mushrooms and salt. Deglaze with white wine. Let it simmer for 5 minutes, then add the cream. Cook for 5 minutes, then remove the thyme, blend, and strain.

Boil the broccoli tufts in boiling water, then sauté them in a pan with oil, rosemary, and a little chili. Blend everything to obtain a puree; add the egg, potato starch, and Parmigiano Reggiano. Pour into a siphon and load it. Fill a plastic glass with a third of the mixture. Microwave for 50 seconds to obtain a dry and spongy dough. Invert the glass and let it cool.

Boil the chestnuts with bay leaves, once well-cooked peel and blend them with a little hot milk.

Place the porcini cream and chestnut puree on the plate, optionally the broccoli sponge, Parmigiano Reggiano wafers, and finally the white truffle.

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