Giada's Spring Penne with Asparagus and Cherry tomatos

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

I made a delicious and easy spring meal that my husband and I both loved. Here is how you make it... 

1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta (8oz penne, I used half whole wheat, half regular)  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.

Prepare your veggies...
1 1/2 pounds thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
  • 2 cups (about 9 ounces) cherry tomatoes
  • 1 cup shelled fresh peas (this took way too long, I might omit next time) 
2. In a large saute pan, heat 3T olive oil over medium-high heat. Add 2 cloves garlic and cook until fragrant, about 1 minute.

3. 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 1/2 cup 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.

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

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