Friday, March 30, 2012

Spring Greens

I recently took a pasta cooking class with Chef Paige Vandegrift at A Thyme for Everything in Lee's Summit, Missouri. Chef Paige recommended tossing cooked, drained pasta with olive oil if you're not immediately adding a sauce. This will help keep the noodles from sticking together. I'm looking forward to the opening of our local farmer's market and the fresh veggies that will be offered there, but in the meantime we enjoyed a taste of spring in Creamy Spring Pasta, from this month's Cooking Light magazine.

3 quarts water
1/4 cup bread crumbs (I used panko)
1 tablespoon butter
3 garlic cloves, minced and divided
1 1/2 cups of 2 inch diagonally cut asparagus
1 cup frozen green peas
6 oz uncooked fettuccine
2 teaspoons olive oil
1/3 cup finely chopped sweet onion
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
1 cup 1% milk
3 oz Neufch√Ętel cream cheese
1 oz Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated (about 1/4 cup packed)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
2 tablespoons chopped fresh tarragon

1.  Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a Dutch oven.
2.  Melt butter in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add 1 garlic clove to pan; saute 1 minute. Add breadcrumbs; saute 3 minutes or until golden brown and toasted. Remove breadcrumb mixture from pan; wipe pan clean with paper towels. 
3. Add asparagus and peas to boiling water; cook for 3 minutes or until crisp-tender. Remove from pan with a slotted spoon.  Rinse under cold water; drain. 
4.  Add pasta to boiling water; cook 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain and keep warm.
5.  Heat olive oil in skillet over medium heat. Add onion and the remaining 2 garlic cloves; cook for 3 minutes or until tender, stirring frequently.  Place flour in a small bowl; gradually whisk in water.  Add water and milk to pan, stirring constantly with a whisk; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; cook 1 minute or until thickened.  Remove from heat; add cheese, salt, and pepper, stirrng until cheeses melt.  Add pasta, asparagus, and peas; toss well.  Sprinkle with breadcrumbs and tarragon.


TheCrankyCrow said...

Oh....Roberta....You had me at pasta....throw in a cream sauce and bread crumbs and you wouldn't have had to even go any farther - but I'm glad you did....This looks and sounds positively delicious!!! YUMMM - going to the top of my gotta try pile! Thanks so much for sharing!! Smiles & Hugs ~ Robin

Robin at The Primitive Hutch said...

Oh Yum!!!
Looks and sounds fabulous!!!
Prim Blessings

annie said...

that sure sounds good!

Heather at Willow Cottage said...

I love anything with a lot of veggies in it and this looks so good. What a decadent treat to have with a bunch of spring veggies. Thanks for sharing.

Michelle said...

Hi Roberta,
That looks delicious! Hope you are enjoying your weekend.

Prims By The Water said...

YUMMY! Making me hungry. Will have tomake this for sure. Happy Easter, janice