March 21, 2014

Creamy Lemon Asparagus Pasta

It's snooooowwwwweeeen. (Translation: Snowing) It's crazy how even though I am SO ready for Spring, and I wish it was 60 degrees and sunny outside... while the snow is actually falling, it's impossible not to enjoy it. Snow is magical like that.

Anyone else out there caught up in the Madness? Basketball? Anyone?? We are!! The Geologist's brother has been the ringleader of a family-wide college basketball tournament since before we were married. Everyone fills out a bracket, including the kids, there is an award for the winner AND for the loser. It's a big deal. And the only time of the year I actually pay attention to sports. Of course, I don't pay any attention leading up to the bracket, so I just wing it. There are a few teams I am emotionally attached to, for "old times" sake, and I almost always pick the Kentucky teams to win. Because they have horses there. Which has nothing to do with basketball, but I love horses, so there's my reasoning. Joe goes with whichever team has the funnest name... or BYU. So compared to him, my reasoning makes all kinds of sense. :) If you HAVE been paying any attention, how CRAZY are things this year?! It's like Duke being dethroned last year made all the smaller teams think, "Wait a second... you mean we can BEAT them?!" because it's happening ALL over!! They just got beat again, by the way, and I was totally cheering the upset... But I had to be quiet about it, because we were in a restaurant surrounded by Duke fans who probably would have beaten me up... There's a reason it's called Madness, people!!

Creamy Lemon Asparagus Pasta (adapted from The English Kitchen)
Printable Recipe

8 oz of uncooked twisty or tubular pasta (penne, ziti, fusilli, rotini, etc...)
1/2 pound of asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-3 inch pieces (I just had a handful)
1 Tb butter
1 clove of garlic, peeled and minced
1 cup chicken broth (or vegetable broth)
1 tsp cornstarch
1/3 cup heavy cream
3 Tb fresh lemon juice (approximately 1 lemon)
zest from one lemon
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
dash of cayenne pepper

fresh Parmesan cheese

Fill a large pot about 3/4 full of water, turn heat on high, and bring to a boil. (While pasta is boiling, start your sauce, below) Add a teaspoon of salt and cook the pasta according to the package directions. Add the asparagus to the pasta and cooking water during the last minute of cooking. Drain asparagus and pasta together in a colander, and return to the pot. Lower the heat to low.

While the pasta is boiling, melt the butter in a skillet/saucepan over medium high heat. Add the garlic and cook, stirring until fragrant and slightly softened, about one minute. Stir the broth and cornstarch together in a small bowl with a fork, making sure to mix well. Stir broth into the garlic/butter. Bring to a boil while stirring. Cook until thickened a bit, stirring constantly for about one minute. Whisk in the cream, lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, pepper and cayenne. Cook and stir for about one minute to heat through. Pour this sauce over the asparagus and pasta that have just been returned to the pot. Stir for a minute or two over low heat till sauce has slightly thickened and coated all the pasta and asparagus. Serve with freshly grated Parmesan cheese. (Gruyere is awesome too!!)
This is my favorite pasta in the whole entire world. (It's also a re-post, because it deserved better pictures!!) I could eat it every day. It comes together so quickly, it's one of my few go-to's for a fast weeknight dinner! Oh, and The Geologist gets tired of it pretty quick, so I often make it for myself and the boys when he's out of town.
It's creamy, but not too rich, lemony, but not too tart, the asparagus is cooked perfectly, it's fresh and decadent at the same time!
The silky sauce covers every bit of pasta and the perfect bite is not complete without a piece of asparagus. And it's just as yummy for leftovers!! I'm totally hooked on this stuff.

1 comment :

  1. So glad this is a favourite of yours April! It's one of my all time favourites too. Your pictures are just wonderful! Love you! Missing you! xxoo


Your comments really DO make my day, and I promise to try and reply to each and every one, either through email or on here :)