Foodie Fridays: Pasta with Asparagus and Pine Nuts
Posted by Guest in Foodie Fridays
Ever peer inside the vegetable drawer and discover something you'd forgotten about? Something fresh and colorful you'd purchased with good intentions, but never quite got around to preparing? Something that, if not dealt with soon, will probably be destined for the compost bin? Happens to me all the time.

Just the other night I was digging around the fridge looking for something to make for dinner (planning is not my strong point) and found a couple of pretty bunches of asparagus that I'd picked up a week or so earlier and promptly forgotten about. Not one to let a good veggie intentionally go to waste (especially one full of potassium, vitamin A and folate), I set out to incorporate the asparagus into that night's dinner. A few additional ingredients and about fifteen minutes later, and dinner was born.

I can't tell you how much I love flexible dishes like this. You can use whatever pasta you have on hand. You can add chicken or shrimp for a little protein. You can trade the goat cheese for a little shaved Parmesan. The possibilities make my mouth water. Make it as written or make it your own, just don't forget to check your veggie drawer first!

Pasta with Asparagus and Pine Nuts
12 ounces pasta (your choice)
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup pine nuts
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
2 pounds asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-1.5" pieces
Salt and pepper to taste
4 ounces goat cheese

Cook pasta al dente according to package directions. Drain and return to the pot.

While the pasta cooks, heat the olive oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add pine nuts and garlic and cook until the pine nuts are toasted and garlic is just crispy (but being careful not to burn) - 1-3 minutes. Add the asparagus and cook until bright green and just tender, another 2-4 minutes.

Add the asparagus mixture to the cooked, drained pasta and toss to combine. Season with salt and pepper. Spoon into serving dishes and top with goat cheese. Serve immediately.

Yield: 4 servings

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