Farfalle with Roasted Shallots, Asparagus, and Creamy Blue Cheese
Why I Love This Recipe
From the Sauce du Jour Kitchen
For the Taste of Spring Cooking Class - 114
Years ago I found a version of this recipe in Bon Appetit. While I loved the combination of the shallots and blue cheese, I found the dish to be too dry. I took the three main ingredients; pasta, shallots and asparagus and made my own version. Adding a little cream and some pasta water took care of that. Sometimes I top it with roasted walnuts, sometimes bread crumbs and sometimes I throw caution to the wind and add both.
Ingredients You'll Need
1 cup wine - for the cook
1-1 1/2 lbs shallots, peeled, halved or quartered lengthwise (depending on size)
4 Tablespoons olive oil
1 pound Farfalle (Bow Tie) pasta
1 1/2 to 2 pounds asparagus, cut into 2 inch pieces
1 pound creamy mild blue cheese, such as Saga or Gorgonzola, crumbled*
1/2 cup heavy cream
A handful of walnuts, roasted; coarsely chopped (Or sub Panko or fresh bread crumbs)
Preheat oven to 375. Toss shallots with 2 Tablespoons of the oil. Place in single layer on a baking sheet. Season with Salt and pepper; bake until tender and golden brown, stirring occasionally, about 35 minutes.
While shallots are roasting, also roast the walnuts in the oven until lightly browned. (If subbing panko, combine the remaining 2 Tablespoons of oil and 1 cup panko or fresh bread crumbs and cook over medium heat until nicely browned.) Set aside.
Cook pasta in large pot of boiling, salted water until it’s just a few minutes away from being al dente. Add the asparagus to the same pot and cook until the asparagus is crisp tender and pasta is al dente, about 2-3 minutes more. Drain; reserve 1 cup of the water and return pasta/asparagus to the pot.
While the pasta and asparagus are cooking, set the crumbled blue cheese and the cream over a pan of simmering water. Add to the drained pasta/asparagus; stir so the cheese is melted and the pasta is well coated. Add some of the reserved pasta water, if necessary, or until sauce is the desired consistency.
Stir in the shallots and season with salt and pepper. Top with the walnuts (or Panko/bread crumbs). Serve immediately.
(Walnuts (or bread crumbs) and shallots can be prepared 8 hours ahead of time. Cover separately and keep at room temp. *If you want a milder flavor, cut back on the blue and add in some mascarpone or cream cheese. This dish is great served with a grilled chicken breast, flank or sliced sirloin steak, plated on top.)