Friday, January 1, 2010

Ditali with Asparagus

Happy New Year!

This pasta cookbook is organized alphabetically by type of vegetable that is the main ingredient. There is also information about equipment used for making pasta dishes, how to make pasta from scratch, and which pasta shape goes with what type of sauce. There is also an Illustrated Guide to Pasta Shapes, and tips on cooking pasta, making pasta sauce, and serving and eating pasta.

2 1/2 to 3 pounds think asparagus spears
1 pound dried ditali ("thimbles") or canneroni
4 tablespoons unsalted butter, in pieces
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Holding an asparagus spear in both hands, bend it gently; it will break naturally at point at which spear becomes tough. Repeat with remaining spears. Discard tough ends. There should be about 1 1/2 pounds left.

Cut spears crosswise into slices 1/3 inch think, about the same length as the ditali.

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add asparagus and cover the pot partially. When water returns to a boil, add ditali. Cook until pasta is al dente. Drain pasta and asparagus. Transfer to a large warm bowl. Add butter, cheese and salt and pepper to taste. Toss to coat.

Pasta Harvest, Janet Flecther, 1995

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