I know spring has arrived not when I receive a bouquet of flowers (tulips are my favourite) but when the Italian surprises me with a bouquet of wild asparagus! And we all know what that means. My husbands favourite pasta dish. Penne with Sausage and Asparagus Cream Sauce.
These days when I am driving down our main street,I look at the side of the road and I see the occasional person bending down and hunting around in the bushes looking for wild asparagus. I realize this pasta dish could be the favourite of more than one Italian.
I love Asparagus, I like to think of it as the sophisticated vegetable. It makes the perfect fritatta, quiche or in this case the perfect Penne with Sausage and Asparagus Cream Sauce. This is a healthy cream sauce, what is so amazing is it is creamy all on its own. No need to add cream or milk. All healthy delicious, sophisticated, asparagus.
So whether you are lucky enough to get some wild asparagus or your local market asparagus, please do yourself a favour and give a pasta the perfect sauce. I used penne pasta in this recipe but any short pasta of your choice would work too and don’t forget the Italian sausage. Buon Appetito!
- 2 lbs asparagus 1 kilo
- 1 cup boiled asparagus water 250 grams
- 2 Italian hot or mild sausages casing removed and chopped
- 1 tablespoon butter 15 grams
- 2 tablespoons tomato puree 30 grams
- 2 tablespoons olive oil 30 grams
- salt to taste
- 3 cups cooked short pasta
Clean the asparagus by snapping off the tough base of each spear, this is usually around the bottom third of the spear, where the stem starts to turn tender. Keep only the tender part. Chop into 1/4 inch (3/4 centimeter) sizes (separate the heads from the stems). Boil or steam for approximately 5 minutes the heads of the asparagus, with a slotted spoon remove the heads and set aside.
Boil in the same water the cut up stems for 15 minutes or until tender. With a slotted spoon remove the stems, DO NOT THROW AWAY THE WATER, and place in a blender with a 1 cup of boiled asparagus water. Blend thoroughly.
In a large frying pan add the olive oil, butter and cut up sausage cook for approximately 10 minutes until sausage is cooked, add the tomato puree, blended asparagus and asparagus heads,(add salt if desired) cook on low to medium for approximately 10-15 minutes, stirring often. Add cooked pasta al dente, toss gently to combine and continue to simmer for approximately 1 minute. Serve immediately topped with freshly grated parmesan cheese if desired. Enjoy!