Pasta with Spring Vegetables, Bathed in Cream

By • March 28, 2014 10 Comments

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Serves 2 to 3, and can easily be doubled

  • 1/2 pound pasta -- I like reginetti, orecchiette, or something that will aptly hold on to peas and cream
  • 1/2 pound frozen or fresh peas (I bet you could also use slices of asparagus, if you really wanted to)
  • 3 to 4 scallions, chopped
  • 1 tablespoon good butter (preferably salted)
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 to 3/4 cups grated Parmesan
  • Lots of freshly cracked black pepper
  • Salt, to taste
  • 10 to 12 big mint leaves, or a small handful, kept whole until the last minute
  • Snips of chives or tarragon, optional
  1. Cook your pasta in a large pot of salted boiling water -- make sure it is salty like the sea! In the last minute of cooking, add your peas and scallions. I like to thaw my frozen peas at least partially, so the water comes back to a boil as quickly as possible. Reserve some pasta cooking water (about 1/2 cup), then drain the pasta, peas, and scallions into a colander with small holes (you don't want to lose all your scallion friends!).
  2. Return your empty pot to the stove. Warm the butter and cream over medium-low heat, until the cream starts to bubble and the butter is totally melted. Add the drained pasta, peas, and scallions, plus the grated Parmesan (be generous; be daring) and lots of black pepper. (Really. Lots!)
  3. Stir everything together, and add a bit of pasta water to thin out the sauce. Start with 1/4 cup, then add as you see fit. Taste for salt, and add a bit more -- flaky preferred -- if you deem it necessary.
  4. Divide your creamy pasta goodness into bowls, then bunch up your mint and snip it into thin ribbons with clean kitchen scissors, scattering it as a garnish. I cut it at the last minute to keep it from turning brown; you can also just use a knife if you like. You can also add chives, or tarragon, or any combination of the three -- they all play well with peas and cream.

More Great Recipes: Pasta|Vegetables|Entrees

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