Wow.  It’s been a while since I posted anything, so for anyone who’s been checking here, I apologize for the lapse.  Things got busy for me around Easter, and now that summer is here, they’re settling down some.

DSC_0096-1

Here’s something I made back in the spring, when asparagus was good, and it was cheap.  It was a cool day, and I was going for something warming and yet spring-ish.  In addition to having some asparagus that needed to be used, we had some leftover sausage, and a small amount of heavy cream, and as I looked at it all, it came together in my head to form a pasta dish with a nice, smokey cream sauce.

You’ll need (per person):

  • a small handful of asparagus
  • a link of smoked sausage
  • a handful of cherry tomatoes
  • a couple of handfuls of pasta
  • about 1/3 cup of heavy cream

DSC_0090-1

Put a big pot of salted water on the stove and set the heat to high.  While you’re waiting for the water to boil, break off the woody ends of the asparagus, and then cut them into 2 inch lengths.  Slice the tomatoes in half, and slice the sausages.

Put a big pan over medium high heat and pour in a slosh of oil.  Throw the sausage in and keep stirring it once in a while, so that it starts to brown nicely.  As the sausage is starting to brown, add the tomatoes.  You don’t want to stir constantly – you want the tomatoes and sausages to sit and caramelize a bit.  After the tomatoes have been in for a few minutes, add the asparagus.

DSC_0092-1

At some point, your water will have started boiling.  Add the pasta and cook it according to the directions on the package.

A couple of minutes before you expect the pasta to be done, pour the cream into the pan with the sausage, tomatoes, and pasta, and use a wooden spoon to scrape at any of the caramelized juices on the bottom of the pan.  Let the sauce boil just a little, until it begins to thicken.  Taste it and see if you need any salt.  The sausage should add a warm, smokey flavor to the cream.  You’ll almost definitely need to grind in some pepper, and if you want to brighten up the sauce just a bit, squeeze in a little lemon juice. Now you can remove this pan from the heat.

DSC_0093-1

Set aside a cup or so of the pasta boiling water, and then drain the pasta.  Add it to the pan with the sausage and asparagus, and if the sauce seems just a little too thick, pour in some of the pasta boiling water and stir.  If you want, top each dish with some thinly sliced fresh basil.

Advertisements