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Thursday, January 20, 2011

Roasted Asparagus Pasta

I wonder how many of you have ever had a go-to dish that you suddenly didn't make any more?  I know there've been many in my life.  Fortunately, this one is now back in my life. 

This recipe came from my friend, Cindy, many years ago.  I made it with great regularity for lots of years.  It's easy, fabulous and I have no clue why it suddenly fell out of my life.

After the party, I went through the refrigerator and identified things that needed to be used up.  A bunch of asparagus was on the list.  Unfortunately, we got into the party leftovers and the asparagus got ignored.  Ignored, that is until the heads of the stalks had gotten pretty mushy.  Yuck.  But, the stalks were still just fine.  My Scotch nature just wouldn't let me toss the stalks.  I racked my brain for a way to use them that the lack of the heads wouldn't be horribly noticible.  Hmmm, in a pasta sauce would be perfect.  Ah, what about Cindy's Asparagus Pasta?

Connie walked into the kitchen while I was getting this together.  He says, "What happened to the asparagus heads?"  So much for my subterfuge.  The end result more than justified the means.  This is one incredible dish.

Cindy's Roasted Asparagus Pasta
serves 2

1 bunch asparagus
olive oil
1 13 3/4 oz can chicken broth
1-2 T lemon juice
freshly grated parmesan or romano
freshly shaved parmesan or romano
2 T toasted pinenuts


Start a pot of water boiling for the pasta.  Preheat the oven to 500.  Pour the chicken broth into a large skillet and turn the heat to medium.  You're going to want to reduce the broth by about 2/3 to 3/4. 

Chop the asparagus into bite-sized pieces and put it in a 9x13 oven proof pan.  Toss it with a little olive oil. 

Pop the pan into the oven and set the timer for 15 minutes.  Check the broth to make sure it's not all boiling away.  Yes, that's the voice of experience... 

Toast the pine nuts and set them aside.

Shave the parmesan.  Shaving in this case is better than grating.

When the chicken broth has reduced enough, add the lemon juice.  Then, toss in the roasted asparagus and half the shaved parmesan.  Toss to coat the asparagus. 

By the time the asparagus is coated, the cheese will probably be melted into the sauce.  That's a good thing.    

Toss with the farfalle and serve topped with the toasted pine nuts and the rest of the shaved parmesan or romano.


The Mom Chef said...

Ok, I had to giggle that you got caught with the asparagus. I'd have noticed too because the tips are the best part. Of course, I'd have still eaten the dish; it looks fantastic!

Ang said...

I have recipes like that and then I stumble over them and think to myself.....why haven't I made this:) This looks great and it's great that you made use of what was left of your asparagus. Inspires me not to be wasteful:)

Anca@Bistro Gerard said...

This looks wonderful - I'm a huge fan of asparagus, raw or cooked in any form, but I think roasting it brings out most of the flavour.

Jackie at said...

I love asparagus. Roasting them is the best way to get all the flavors. Mmmm what a delicious pasta dish!

Becky said...

This is one of my favorite ways to eat asparagus with pasta. Your dish looks so good, especially with the shaved cheese. I've never tried roasting it, though. We either grill it or saute it. Will have to try the oven;)

Susan said...

Yum! What would we ever do without quick pasta dishes ?!?

Joy said...

This looks delicious! I'm looking forward to the first sprigs of asparagus in the new season, they always seem the sweetest. Very cute mention of sneakily snipping off the heads.

Chef Dennis said...

now that is one delicious pasta dish! It's nice to see asparagus used, I think we often forget it has other uses besides just have created a perfect blend of flavors with this wonderful dish!
thanks for sharing

Kate @ said...

Roasted asparagus is delicious! I can only imagine the wonderful taste of this pasta dish ...great job!

Sandra said...

Love it!! Looks wonderful, and it sounds so tasty! Nicely done!

Jorie said...

This reminds me of one of my favorite dishes at Lucky Strike in NYC. I used to order that all the time. I'm making it!Thanks.

Mama J said...

Can't wait to try this. I was just in the store and the kids were begging me to buy them asparagus. :)

Tiffany said...

Oh that shaved parm on top looks so wonderful!

Ang said...

Pine nuts even. I love the sound of this. I'm craving roasted asparagus now:)

Lizzy said...

Oh, this sounds wonderful! So simple yet flavorful...I'm going to have to try it :)