Inspiration for tonight's dinner: fresh mint and its ability to make the stars of the season absolutely sing.
Spring is exploding outside, inside, at the farmers market, and in some of our hay fever-prone heads. This can only mean one thing: time to let the earthy gifts of May work their green magic on our weeknight dinner plates!
1/4 pound proscuitto shank 1 pint cream 1/2 lb snap peas 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon chopped fresh mint 1 bunch asparagus 1 handful of hazelnuts
I assume you have dried pasta (the recipe calls for farfalle or orecchiette but any small, bouncy pasta works), garlic, onions, salt, pepper, olive oil, vinegar (preferably sherry), honey, parmesan, and a lemon. If not (and I really bet you do) add those pantry essentials to the list!
1. Pasta is happening tonight, so the first thing to do is get a big pot of generously salted water (supposedly it should taste like the ocean) on the stove. Now you can turn your attention to the salad.
2. Shave all of that asparagus with a vegetable peeler. Sure, it sounds a little tedious, but it's also simple and meditative. Zone in on NPR, or some relaxing music and peel stresses of the day away. Toss the shavings with the hazelnuts.
3. Prep the dressing for the salad and set it aside.
4. Back to the pasta! It will require all of your attention for about 12 minutes, after which it will be creamy, hot and very ready to be eaten! Dress the salad and have a seat.
Aside: I say we pour a sunny, well-chilled Chenin blanc with this meal and pretend we're in France. Happy springtime, friends!
A New Way to Dinner, co-authored by Food52's founders Amanda Hesser and Merrill Stubbs, is an indispensable playbook for stress-free meal-planning (hint: cook foundational dishes on the weekend and mix and match ‘em through the week).
I love Champagne and cheese and potato chips. In fact, that would be the most dreamtastic dinner. I have two cats and I am a proud Portlander-by-birth currently residing on Manhattan's rich and wonderful Lower East Side in a closet that has no closets. In May I finished up a masters degree in Food Studies at NYU and now I am trying to figure out exactly why I did that and what that all means. It is very fun and scary but mostly fun. I like to cook and I love to bake.