Asparagus, Prosciutto, and Mushroom Pasta

I admit it.  I’m a Food Network junkie.  The engaging chefs/hosts make me feel like I, too can create beautiful culinary creations that will wow my family and make me the rock star of the potluck.  So it was just another day, and I was listening to Anne Burrell describing the best gnocchi recipe ever(!) with the perfect sauce.  The sauce made me say, “mmmmmm!”  I couldn’t help myself!  I decided I could adapt her recipe to what I had in my garden and could find at the store without compromising the essential idea or the yummy factor.  I was right.  I was too lazy the other day to make the gnocchi and served it over linguini instead–I already had it in the pantry–but I’d like to try the gnocchi one of these days. 

  • 1 1/2 cups asparagus, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • olive oil–enough to cover the bottom of a large skillet
  • 3-4 garlic cloves, peeled and smashed
  • pinch of red pepper flake
  • 1/4 pound prosciutto, cut into 1/2 inch slices
  • 2 cups cleaned and sliced mushrooms  (Go for some fancy-schmancy ones–my grocery had shitakes–yummy!  A little note–shitake stems are tough and need to be discarded or saved to flavor a broth, but should not go into a recipe.)
  • salt
  • 1 cup chicken broth
  • 1 TBSP butter
  • parmesan, finely shredded, and chopped chives to garnish
  • 1 package pasta, cooked according to package directions

Cook pasta according to package directions.

Blanch asparagus in salted, boiling water until cooked, but still crispy and green.  Immediately remove to an ice bath to stop the cooking process.

Add mushrooms, lightly salt them and cook until tender, an additional 3-4 minutes.

Add asparagus and chicken broth.  Cook until broth is reduced by half.

Add butter and swirl through the sauce until melted and combined.

Add cooked pasta to the pan and toss to coat with sauce and distribute asparagus, prosciutto and mushrooms.

Serve on plates, garnish with parmesan and chives.  Enjoy!

Yummy!  This sauce comes together in about the same time it takes to cook the pasta–starting after the asparagus is blanched.  We had enough for 5 generous servings. 

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