Whole Wheat Pasta Primavera

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Alright, this is starting to get a bit ridiculous.  It is 2/3 of the way through April and we’re currently getting snow in Minnesota!  This morning as I was digging my car out from where I parked it on the street last night, I thought about all of the unfortunate things happening in the world right now and put things into perspective.  If the biggest obstacle in my day is a few inches of snow in April, things are going pretty well :)

Rather than complain, I am going to just get over the whole thing and cook like it is Spring weather outside anyway. Maybe the more I cook with Spring ingredients, the more likely it is that the weather outside will start behaving a bit?  #wishfulthinking

“Pasta Primavera” (season of Spring) can come in a variety of forms, so I want to share one of my recent interpretations.  What’s most important with this style of pasta  is that you use lots of fresh, crisp and colorful vegetables and some aromatics.  I like to add in lots of lemon and garlic.  Feel free to add protein of your choice – chicken, sausage or shrimp would all go great with this dish!  I added the final touch to this dish by sprinkling some toasted pine nuts on top.  Best decision EVER!

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What will you need?

A pasta of your choice (I like long noodles like spaghetti or fettuccine)

1 cup broccoli florets

5 asparagus stalks, cut diagonally into bite-sized pieces

1 cup crimini mushrooms, sliced

1 cup cherry tomatoes, cut into quarters

1 small lemon (use this for the juice and the zest!)

1/2 cup olive oil

1 tbsp butter

2 cloves garlic, finely chopped

1 small shallot, diced

1/2 cup fresh chopped parsley

2 tbsp toasted pine nuts

Optional additions:

Heavy cream, dry white wine, Parmesan cheese, meat

How do you make it?

Cook up whatever type of pasta you want – and set to the side.  (I like serving this pasta at room temperature.)

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In a medium saucepan, bring 4 cups of water to a boil. Blanch your broccoli and asparagus for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat and set to the side.

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In a small skillet, combine 1/4 cup olive oil with your butter, the juice from half of your lemon, garlic, shallot.  Simmer the mixture just long enough for the garlic and shallot to get nice and aromatic.  Add in your mushrooms and sautee until they are nice and soft – about 5 minutes.  Add in your parsley and continue to cook for another minute.

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Grab your broccoli and asparagus from wherever they have been cooling and add them to the pan to warm them up a bit – only for about 2 minutes.

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In a separate bowl, mix your quartered cherry tomatoes with the juice from the other half of your lemon, 1/4 cup olive oil and some lemon zest.  This mixture is going to taste SO fresh on top!

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Plate your pasta.

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Add the sauteed vegetable mixture on top.

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Then the cherry tomatoes.

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Top with some perfectly toasted pine nuts. Happy Spring!

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This pasta also makes great leftovers for lunch, FYI :)

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Comments

  1. Sounds wonderful! Will try this for our meatless Sundays :)

  2. Looks SO delicious.

  3. A wonderfully colourful dish for spring! This recipe will get a lot of use in my kitchen…thanks for sharing!

    -Shannon

  4. Love the look of this sauce – so fresh, so colourful!! Fabulous!

  5. This was excellent! We just had it for dinner, thank you for the great recipe! The tomatoes with lemon were really perfect in this.
    I guess you know your recipe was featured here:
    http://blog.tagesanzeiger.ch/sweethome/index.php/41143/fruhling-auf-dem-teller/
    and I am sure it is being cooked by quite a few people in Switzerland this weekend, where we currently also have horrible amounts of rainfall instead of spring.
    Greetings to Minnesota, I hope the weather has improved in the meantime. :)

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