Sisters... I'm lucky enough to have three of them. Ok, so only one is technically my real sister, but the other two may as well be. And I'm even luckier that two of the three live right here in KC. (miss you, Ash!) We decided to get together for a little vino, some food, and a lot of girl talk.
I've had this recipe on my must-try list for a while now and decided now was the perfect time to try it out. All signs led to very good things: pine nuts, pancetta, asparagus, cheese, pasta. Why it took me so long to make, I don't know.
With just a bit of easy prep, we had a great pasta meal to
soak up all that wine enjoy with each other. Aren't sisters the best?!
Pasta with Asparagus, Pancetta, and Pine Nuts
8 ounces uncooked cavatappi pasta
1 pound asparagus, trimmed and cut diagonally into 1 1/2-inch pieces
1 teaspoon minced garlic
3 tablespoons pine nuts
2 ounces diced pancetta
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 teaspoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup (1 ounce) crumbled Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; add asparagus to pan during last 3 minutes of cooking. Drain. Sprinkle pasta mixture with garlic; return to pan, and toss well.
Arrange pine nuts in a single layer on a jelly-roll pan. Bake at 400 degrees for 3 minutes or until golden and fragrant, stirring occasionally. Place in a small bowl.
Increase oven temperature to 475 degrees.
Arrange pancetta on jelly-roll pan. Bake at 475 degrees for 6 minutes or until crisp.
Combine lemon juice, olive oil, salt, and pepper, stirring with a whisk. Drizzle over pasta mixture; toss well to coat. Sprinkle with pine nuts, pancetta, and cheese.
This recipe was really 'by the book'. Not much deviation here, except I may or may not have bumped the amount of pancetta to twice the requirement and it's very possible I just eye-balled the lemon juice - olive oil dressing mixture. But isn't that what cooking is all about? Enjoying the moment, doing what feels right, and reaping the benefits at the end? I'd say so!