Pasta With Asparagus and Spring Greens
- 10 to 12 ounces tube shaped pasta (penne, rigatoni)
- 1 pound fresh asparagus
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 2 to 3 cloves garlic, minced
- 6 to 8 ounces fresh greens, such as arugula, watercress, or baby spinach leaves (or a combination), well rinsed, stemmed if desired
- 1/2 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese, feta cheese, or crumbly goat cheese (such as Montrachet)
- Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
- Cook the pasta according in plenty of rapidly simmering water, then drain.
- Meanwhile, trim woody ends from the asparagus spears and scrape any tough skin with a vegetable peeler. Slender spring asparagus usually needs no scraping. Cut the spears into 2-inch long pieces and set aside.
- Heat the oil in a small skillet and add the garlic. Saut/(c) over low heat for a minute or two or until golden. Add the asparagus and a small amount of water. Cover and steam until the asparagus is done to your liking but still bright green. Add the greens, cover, and steam very briefly (less than a minute will do), just until wilted down slightly.
- Combine the pasta with the asparagus and greens mixture and cheese in a serving bowl and toss well. Season with salt and pepper and serve at once.
This simple pasta dish showcases leafy greens as well as asparagus, another classic spring vegetable.
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