Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Penne with Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes (Spring)

Cook Time: 10 min
Level: Easy
Yield: 4 to 6 servings


8 ounces penne pasta
3 tablespoons olive oil
2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 pounds thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 cups (about 9 ounces) cherry tomatoes
1 cup shelled fresh peas
1/2 cup low-sodium chicken stock
1 cup grated Parmesan
2 tablespoons chopped fresh basil leaves


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the
pasta and cook until tender but still firm to the bite, stirring
occasionally, about 8 to 10 minutes. Drain the pasta, reserving about
1/2 cup of the pasta water.

In a large saute pan, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the
garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add the asparagus,
season with the salt and pepper, and cook for 3 minutes until slightly
soft. Add the cherry tomatoes and peas. Cook for 2 minutes. Pour the
chicken stock into the pan and bring the mixture to a simmer. Cook
until the tomatoes start to burst and the stock is reduced by half,
about 3 minutes.

Transfer the asparagus mixture to a large serving bowl. Add the cooked
pasta and 1/2 of the Parmesan. Toss well, adding reserved pasta water,
if needed, to loosen the pasta. Garnish with the remaining Parmesan
and chopped basil.


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