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came across a recipe we thought perfect for spring: using peas and
asparagus, from a very well-known chef. We have to admit, we were
perplexed with both the ratio of the quantity of the ingredients and the
actual cooking times. It did not really work, but we loved the concept.
Therefore, here is our adaptation (major adaptation in a way) for a
penne with peas and asparagus, to which we added, for an excellent
flavor contrast: mushrooms.
for the sauce:
- three tablespoons extra virgin olive
- three garlic cloves, peeled and minced
- one-half pound asparagus
- one cup shelled English peas (or frozen baby peas,
- one-quarter pound shitake mushrooms (or crimini)
- one cup chicken stock
- one-quarter cup heavy cream
- two tablespoons unsalted butter
- two tablespoons chopped fresh sage
- one-half cup freshly grated parmesan
- salt and freshly ground pepper
for the pasta:
Prepare the asparagus. Snap off the tough
ends. Slice on a diagonal into one-inch lengths.
In a large saute pan, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the
garlic. Thirty seconds later, add the asparagus, the sage and the
mushrooms. After three minutes add the stock; turn the heat up to a
boil. Cook for another minute, until the asparagus is just tender.
Add the peas and cream over high heat, a half teaspoon of salt and some
freshly ground pepper, and cook for about two minutes, until the cream
is reduced and the sauce starts to thicken.
Meanwhile bring 4-5 quarts of water to a
raging boil. Add a tablespoon of salt. Drop in the pasta and stir.
Continue cooking until al dente (or just a touch short of al dente). Drain
somewhat, although the pasta should carry a little moisture.
Bring the sauce to heat again. Add the
pasta to the sauce. Add the butter. Stir very well. Add half the parmesan. Cover and cook for a minute over medium heat
to get the pasta really steaming.
Stir again. Serve, with additional parmesan
on the side.