Springtime: that special time of year when we try to consume as much asparagus as possible before summer hits and we’re forced to eat all the zucchini we grow.
Combine that with Dinnertime: that time of day when I usually want to take a nap but am forced to feed myself so my blood sugar doesn’t plummet and turn me crazier than I already am. So the requirements are asparagus + quick and easy, and the answer is pasta with asparagus, peas and prosciutto.
Okay, and some other, slightly less healthy things, like butter and cream and cheese. But only a little. And did I mention all the peas?
The best part is that everything happens in one pot in about 20 minutes, and that includes the time you spend waiting for the water to boil. You blanch the veg in the same boiling water in which you cook the pasta.
Then you drain, and return to the same pot to toss everything around with some butter and cream.
And some cheese and lemon zest.
And some prosciutto, because dinner isn’t really dinner without pork.
Then you fix yourself a glass of lemonade, and sit down to dinner. And feel good that you’ve only dirtied one pot, and you’ll totally have time to straighten up the kitchen in time to relax for a little while and maybe watch some of The Voice. Yes, maybe I watch it sometimes, if I catch it. Shut up.
This meal made me sad that asparagus time is pretty much gone. Vegetal asparagus, sweet peas, salty prosciutto and fragrant lemon, all bound together in the barest of cream sauces. It was, dare I say it, “delish.”
Happy Fun Springtime Pasta
1 box fettuccine
1 bunch asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch lengths
8 oz. fresh peas (you can use frozen if you gotta)
3 tbsp. butter
1/3 c. heavy cream
3 oz. Italian grating cheese of your choice, grated
4 oz. prosciutto, roughly chopped
zest of 1 lemon
Heat a large pot of water to boiling. Add the pasta. When the pasta has 5 minutes left to cook, add the asparagus and peas to the pot.
When the pasta and veg are done, drain them and return them to the pot. With tongs, toss the hot pasta with the butter, cream and cheese until everything is well coated. Toss in the prosciutto and lemon zest.
Serve immediately, passing more cheese at the table.
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