Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Asparagus Farfalle

I was so, so very close to just having cookies for dinner tonight. The weather is on the verge of turning into full-blown spring, and we've been eating on the porch lately. It's not quite warm enough, though, and at least one sweater is still required. I'm looking at it as points toward my BadAss badge.

Tonight, even though it's a bit chilly, I wanted to sit outside in the almost-sun and eat cookies. Fortunately (or unfortunately, I'm never sure how to read these things), the promise of roasted walnuts and asparagus pulled me away from the porch. The mushrooms, as they were cooking? Smelled amazing. This sauce made my house smell so good.

Adding the pasta and asparagus to the saucepan means that's one less dish to wash, and gets that much more sauce on the noodles. With this sauce, that's a very good thing.

This was delicious. The walnuts were perfect in this. They added a lot of depth to the flavor of the sauce and the crunch helped vary the texture.

Asparagus Farfalle
Serves 4
8 oz farfalle
1/2 c white onion, diced
1/2 c crimini mushrooms, chopped
1/2 c shitaki mushrooms, chopped
1 t fresh thyme, chopped
1 t salt
1 t pepper
1 T flour
1 T sherry
1/2 c half and half
1/2 c skim milk
1 bunch asparagus, ends trimmed, and chopped
1/2 c walnuts
1 oz goat cheese
2 T Parmesan, grated
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 and put the walnuts on a rimmed baking sheet. When the oven is hot, bake the walnuts for 15 minutes, shaking the pan halfway through to keep them from burning.
  2. Cook the pasta according to package instructions. When the pasta is one minute from being cooked, add the asparagus and cook for two minutes. Drain and set aside.
  3. Heat a sauce pan over medium heat with 1 T olive oil. When the pan is hot, add the onions, mushrooms, salt, pepper, and thyme to the pan, stirring occasionally, for about 10 minutes until the mushrooms are tender.
  4. Add the flour to the pan and cook for two minutes, stirring constantly. Stir in the sherry and scrape the bottom of the pan. Pour in the milk and half and half and reduce the heat; cook for 2-3 minutes until the mixture thickens.
  5. Toss in the pasta, goat cheese, and asparagus and stir thoroughly.
  6. Serve with Parmesan and additional pepper.

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