I found this recipe over 20 years ago in the food section of the Philadelphia Inquirer and it has become a go to recipe. Very simple to make and for anyone who doesn't like asparagus, this will change your mind! —Rick
Parmesan Cheese (grated)
Freshly grated lemon zest
Olive Oil (to saute asparagus tips)
Olive Oil (for sauce)
reserved cooking water
Pasta (penne or orecchiette work great)
In This Recipe
Wash the asparagus. Cut off the tips and place them in a small bowl and set aside.
Snap about 1 inch off the bottom of the asparagus stalks and discard thse pieces.
Chop the remaining stalks into 1/2"pieces and place in a pot of about 3 cups of boiling water.
Cook until slightly firm, about 8-10 minutes.
Drain, saving 1 cup of the cooking water.
Meanwhile, in a small skillet heat 1 tsp. of olive oil over medium heat. Add asparagus tips and saute them, shaking the pan occasionally, until cooked to your liking. (watch so they don't burn) Lower heat if necessary.
Remove from heat and set aside.
In a blender or food processor, combine the cooked stalks, remaining 1/4 cup of olive oil, 3/4 cup cheese, the lemon zest, salt and pepper and 1/2 cup of the reserved cooking water. Blend until smooth. Check the sauce for consistency. If you like it thinner, add a little more cooking water and process again.
Cook your pasta per package and combine with sauce. Top pasta servings with asparagus tips, more parmesan and lemon wedges squeezed over each serving.