Summer is officially upon us! We would like to celebrate the season by sharing a yummy pure joy recipe with you: Penne with Asparagus & Lemon Tarragon. This recipe bursts in flavor, is perfectly zesty and deliciously herbaceous. Whether you enjoy it alone, make it for a dinner party or bring it to a backyard BBQ, this recipe will be sure to satiate all parties involved. Please enjoy!
Penne with Asparagus & Lemon Tarragon
19 oz. Asparagus cut in 2" lengths, bias cut
1 lb. Penne Pasta
1/4 cup Sherry
1.1 oz. Shallots minced
2 Tbls. Extra Virgin Olive Oil
24 oz. Heavy Cream
3 oz. Tarragon roughly chopped
1 Lemon zested & juiced
1 Tbls. Cornstarch & 2 Tbls. Water for thickening (cornstarch slurry)
First, prepare the asparagus. Remove and discard hard asparagus ends and cut into 2" length pieces. Blanch for 30 seconds in salted boiling water. Remove asparagus and cool in an ice bath. Drain all water and pat dry thoroughly.
Next, prepare the pasta. Cook pasta in salted water until al dente. Save a 1/2 cup of the pasta water. Rinse pasta to stop cooking then add the 1/2 cup of pasta water back into the pasta and toss. Season to taste. Add the asparagus you previously prepared into the pasta.
Making the Lemon Tarragon Sauce; add olive oil to a large saucepan and saute shallots on medium heat until translucent. Add sherry and fresh squeezed lemon juice. Reduce by about 50%. Add cream & lemon zest, reduce again by approximately 1/4 of the size. Add 1/2 of the chopped Tarragon and stir in cornstarch slurry as needed to thicken further.
Now, for some Pure Joy, add pasta and asparagus to the hot thickened sauce. Add the remaining Tarragon. Serve and enjoy immediate.