This is a dish my father made for every bbq while I was growing up. I was so fond of it that I remember asking him to make it for my birthday when I was 12 (my birthday is in December, not exactly asparagus season). This recipe is great because it's fresh, versatile and just the right flavors for warm weather parties and easy dinners. I just made this for a babyshower and it was a hit! It can be served warm as a main course or as a side to whatever else you cook up- just remember to add extra lemon right before serving to keep it zingy! —enbe
4 as a main dish, as many as you want as a side
bunches asparagus, tough ends trimmed
fresh or frozen peas
finely grated parmesan
juice of 1-2 lemons
kosher salt & freshly ground black pepper
In This Recipe
Start a pot of well salted water and cook the pasta al dente.
While you're waiting for the pasta, wash and trim the asparagus. Snap off the inedible bottoms and cut stalks into one inch chunks. Steam the asparagus until bright green and crisp. If it starts turning brown and limp, you're starting to overcook it. It won't take long. While you're at it, cook the peas.
In the bottom of a large bowl, combine olive oil, parmesan (save a little to sprinkle on top), lemon zest, 1 tablespoon of lemon juice, a big pinch of salt and a heavy sprinkling of pepper. Stir. Drain the pasta well and toss it, the asparagus, and the peas in a bowl coating well with the dressing. Do this while all of the ingredients are warm so the pasta absorbs some of the lemony flavor. Take a little taste and add more lemon juice or pepper to your liking. Some like it with more lemon, some with more pepper. Serve with a sprinkling of parmesan and enjoy! Note: if you're making this a bit in advance of serving, make sure to add more lemon later as it dissipates over time.