Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Creamy Pasta with Asparagus, Parmesan, and Crispy Prosciutto

Serves 4

I made this for dinner tonight and it was a hit! Everyone (including my 9 month old) ate until they could eat no more. The recipe says that you can substitute bacon for the Prosciutto (which I did), and the asparagus that I could find (at the 2nd store I went too) looked terrible and was crazy expensive so I substituted broccoli. I also added cooked chicken and I always have a heavy hand on the heavy cream - I probably ended up adding a whole extra cup before it was said and done. (I don't cook much without heavy cream!) Try it - you will love it!

1 Tbsp. olive oil
4 oz. thinly sliced prosciutto, cut into 1/4" strips (or 12 slices of bacon)
1 garlic clove, minced (or more if you like garlic like me)
1 cup of heavy cream
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
Salt and pepper
1 lb. Fusilli or Penne pasta
1 lb. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1" pieces
1 1/2 cups grated parmesan cheese
3/4 c. chopped fresh basil

1. Bring 4 qts. water to a boil in a large pot (DO NOT COOK YOUR PASTA YET!). Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium heat until just smoking. Cook prosciutto until lightly browned and crisp, about 5 minutes. Transfer to paper towel-lined plate. Add garlic to pan and cook until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in cream and lemon juice and simmer until slightly thickened, 3-5 minutes. Remove from heat.

2. Add 1 Tablespoon salt and pasta to boiling water and cook until just beginning to soften, about 8 minutes. Add asparagus to the pot with the pasta and cook until bright green and tender and pasta is al dente, about 4 minutes. Reserve 1 cup cooking water, drain pasta and asparagus, and return to pot. Add sauce, 1/2 c. reserved cooking water, cheese and basil to pot and toss to combine, adding remaining cooking water as needed. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with crispy prosciutto. Serve.


Amy said...

Love the new look- my cooking snob friends will love this recipe! I may even get adventurous and try it. Some of the ingredients scare me but I can follow a recipe!

Denise said...

I LOVED this! This is going on our list of family favorites!

Thanks Dawn.

BTW, this was the first time I ever made a non-tomato based sauce from scratch, and it could not have been easier or tasted better!

Um, I would love to see what else you have up your sleeve!