Thursday, May 26, 2011

Bright Spring Supper

Although I do wish the weather was warmer, this extended wet spring has really done wonders for the garden. We're having trouble keeping up with our huge patch of beautiful lettuce (little gems, romaine, red leaf, butter) and arugula and now the peas have started coming in. I was getting a little tired of the typical green salad and wanted another way to tie arugula into a simple one-dish spring supper and this is what I came up with. This would be great with any combo of green spring veggies, including asparagus, peas, baby green beans, baby zucchini, etc.

Spaghetti with Spring Veggies and Breadcrumbs
½ cup breadcrumbs (store-bought or make your own)
Olive oil
2 Tbs. finely chopped parsley
Zest of 1 lemon
1 lb spaghetti (regular or whole wheat)
½ lb asparagus (about 10 stalks)
2 handfuls snap peas
4-6 cups loosely packed arugula
Juice of 1 lemon
Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes

Combine the bread crumbs in a small saucepan with a bit of olive oil. Cook and stir until golden brown and toasted. Stir toasted breadcrumbs with parsley, lemon zest and a pinch of salt. Set aside. While salted water comes to a boil, chop asparagus and peas into ½ to 1-inch pieces. Boil pasta according to package instructions.

Two minutes before pasta is al dente, add chopped veggies to pot with pasta and finish cooking. Reserve ¼ cup water. Drain but do not rinse pasta and veggies to hot pot. Add pasta cooking water, lemon juice, arugula and a sprinkle of parmesan cheese and a pinch of red pepper flakes. Stir well until arugula is wilted.

Turn pasta into large serving dish and top with breadcrumb mixture. Serve with additional Parmesan cheese and red pepper flakes.

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