Sunday, June 1, 2008

Creamy Asparagus Pasta

Here is one of the first "real" meals (I do not count frozen entrees as real meals) that I have made in our new house - with the tiny kitchen! Although I am surprised to say I am not hating the tiny elf kitchen as much as I thought I would!
I am really working on the pics, I seem to really suck at taking clear ones!
8 oz whole-wheat penne pasta (I used regular penne since I didn't have any WW on hand)
1 bunch asparagus - trimmed
1 1/2 cup whole milk (I used skim b/c that is what we had, I think whole might have been better though )
4 tsp whole-grain mustard
4 tsp flour
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp ground pepper
2 tsp evoo
3 garlic cloves; minced

2 tsp minced fresh tarragon or 1/2 tsp dried ( I didn't have any tarragon and neither did Giant Eagle so we went with thyme and rosemary instead)
1 tsp lemon zest
2 tsp lemon juice (I used juice from one lemon - but it needed more)
1/2 cup grates Parmesan cheese divided

Recipe directions:
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Ad pasta and cook for 3 minutes less than the directions. Add asparagus and continue cooking until the pasta and asparagus are just tender, 3 minutes more. drain and return to the pot.

Meanwhile, whisk milk, mustard, flour, salt and pepper in a medium bowl. Heat oil in a medium saucepan over med-high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring until fragrant and lightly browned, 30 seconds to one minute. Whisk in the milk mixture. Bring to a simmer, stirring constantly, and cook until thickened, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in tarragon, lemon zest and juice.

Stir the sauce into the pasta-asparagus mixture. Cook over med-high heat, stirring until the sauce is thick and creamy coating the pasta, 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in 1/4 cup Parmesan cheese. Divide the pasta amount 4 bowl and top with the remaining 1/4 cup Parmesan.


Now since I do not know how to read a recipe and didn't have tarragon I added 1/2 tsp of thyme and 1/4 tsp of rosemary - a tad much since I used dried -oops! I would say this was a decent meal. I would definitely add more lemon juice and add the correct amount of dried herbs. Fresh would of course be better! I think I would also like this with some grilled chicken tossed in but that that is just the carnivore in me coming out! Steve had no complaints and seemed to like it the way it was!

Calories (according to sparkrecipes) 212 calories per serving - of course will be more if you follow the directions and use whole milk

*tip - throw the asparagus into the boiling water with the rubber bands still around them, they will be easier to fish out and the rubber band will not taste the water at all - I promise! Cut into 3/4 inch pieces then throw into the pasta.

And now for your viewing pleasure: Pretty flower in the front of our new house! Love them!

Zekers enjoying his new digs!

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