With Asparagus (Pasta Spara)
2 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup thinly sliced leeks
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon chopped fresh thyme
1/2 cup white wine
1/2 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, drained and coarsely chopped
12 oz.(360 g) dried corkscrew or any other pasta you like
1/2 lb. fresh asparagus, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
4 oz.(120 g) soft goat cheese
Makes 4 servings.
- Bring large pot of salted water
to a boil.
- Meanwhile, in large skillet,
heat oil over medium-low heat.
Add sliced leeks and cook, stirring often, until softened,
- Add garlic, thyme, wine and
sun-dried tomatoes and cook 1
minute, then remove from heat and set aside.
- When water boils, add pasta,
stirring to prevent sticking.
Cook according to package directions.
- About 2 minutes before pasta is
done, add asparagus and cook
just until tender.
- Drain pasta and asparagus and
transfer to shallow serving
bowl. Reheat sauce and add to pasta, tossing to coat. Season with salt
and pepper and dot with goat cheese; stir slightly.
- Serve right away.
|Did You Know?
origin continues to evoke speculation. While many different cultures
ate some sort of noodle-like food, composed mostly of grain, the key
characteristics of pasta are durum wheat semolina, with a high gluten
content. Furthermore, it is made with a technique that allows the
resultant dough to be highly malleable, thus resulting in the many
different shapes (i.e., ziti, spaghetti, ravioli) that characterize
In North Africa, a food similar to pasta, known as couscous, has been
eaten for centuries. However, it lacks the distinguishing malleable
nature of what is now referred to as pasta, couscous being more akin to
droplets of dough. In China, noodles of millet or rice have been eaten
for centuries, but lack the durum wheat semolina paste that denotes
Historians have noted several lexical milestones relevant to pasta,
none which change these basic characteristics. For example, the works
of the 2nd century AD Greek physician Galen mention itrion, homogeneous
compounds made up of flour and water. The Jerusalem Talmud records that
itrium, a kind of boiled dough, was common in Palestine from the 3rd to
5th centuries AD.