A pasta with asparagus recipe for spring
This simple recipe for pasta with asparagus embraces some of the finest aphrodisiacs of spring. It combines pencil-thin asparagus, simply baked–nothing could be easier or more perfect for springtime. And since asparagus is a noted aphrodisiac, this should be a strong contender for a no-stress date night. But to give the flavor depth and a distinctive, springtime flare, I’ve included the somewhat elusive flavor of green garlic, an alluim with a very short season.
Its rarity makes green garlic a very special form of garlic. and the mild, exotic flavor of green garlic. To finish this pasta with asparagus, a simple sauce with a spark of citrus brings it all together.
What is green garlic?
Green garlic is one of the first great, ingredients of spring. It’s simply young garlic, before it separates into cloves. But their flavor is like a mild, almost sweet version of garlic or something like a subtly flavored cross between garlic and green onions. And since garlic is on my list of the best aphrodisiacs, it adds not only to the flavor of this elegant pasta dish but also to its aphrodisiac potential.
Substitutions for making this recipe without green garlic
Of course, when spring is over, you probably won’t be able to find green garlic readily available. But that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy this pasta recipe. It won’t have the same, subtle flavor, but you can always use a clove of mature garlic in a pinch for an easy pasta dinner all the year through.
Just make sure to use fresh garlic for this linguini pasta with asparagus recipe. Please do not use precut, bottled garlic. And mince it finely; that will help keep the flavor mild to more closely mimic the effect of fresh, green garlic.
Love simple pasta recipes? Check out my Easy Vegan Carrot Top Pesto.
Fresh Linguini with Asparagus and Green Garlic
- 1 lb pencil-thin asparagus trimmed
- 9 oz fresh linguini
- 1/2 cup pasta cooking water reserved
- 1 tbsp olive oil
- 2 stalk green garlic white and pale green part, finely chopped
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/3 cup Parmesan cheese grated
- 1/4 tsp fresh lemon zest
- additional salt to taste
- Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
- Arrange asparagus on a baking sheet and cook for 7-9 minutes, until asparagus is just hinting at fork tender. Do not overcook. (You can also steam asparagus in microwave.)
- Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Cook pasta according to instructions until just al dente. When pasta has finished cooking drain, reserving 1/2 c of the pasta water for the sauce.
- While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil over medium heat.
- Add the garlic and saute for 30 seconds to 1 minute. If garlic begins to brown, turn down heat.
- Add the asparagus and salt and cook for an additional minute, tossing to thoroughly combine, then remove from heat.
- In a small bowl, whisk the egg yolk then mix with the Parmesan and 1/3 c of the pasta water.
- Return the pasta to the pot and add the egg yolk mixture. Cook over medium heat for about 2 minutes, until sauce is thick and pasta coated. If the sauce gets too thick, add additional pasta water. Toss in the asparagus and season with additional salt to taste.
- Top with lemon zest before serving.
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