At last! Local asparagus is in! I stopped at the farm today and bought a pound to use for dinner. Picked today, cooked today…doesn’t get much better than that. I love asparagus and pasta, so I made more than we needed for our dinner so that we can take some for our lunches tomorrow (or turn it into pasta pancakes for dinner later this week).
To remove the sand from the asparagus, I placed the asparagus pieces in a bowl of cold water and agitated, and agitated, and agitated it. Then I agitated it some more. Then the asparagus was ready to use.
This recipe is from Mary Ann Esposito’s Ciao Italia series. The only difference, is that I used Grana Padano cheese instead of pecorino.
Fetuccine with Saffron and Asparagus
2 Tbsp olive oil
1 onion, chopped
1 pound fresh asparagus, cut in thirds (grown within 10 miles of my house)
Salt and Pepper to taste
Pinch saffron threads (I ground them)
Grated pecorino (I used Grana Padano)
Heat the olive oil in a saucepan and add the onion; cook until it begins to soften. Add the asparagus pieces, sat and pepper and cook until the asparagus is tender.
Set 3/4 cup of the asparagus mixture aside (I selected the asparagus tips). Puree the rest. Transfer to a small pot and keep covered over low heat.
Cook the pasta until al dente; drain, reserving 1/4 cup of the cooking water. Dissolve the saffron in the reserved water, then mix it into the pureed asparagus.
Mix the pasta with the asparagus sauce; transfer to a platter and top with the reserved asparagus pieces and sprinkle with grated cheese. Enjoy!
Serves 4 to 6