Asparagus and Pancetta Pasta

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Would it be weird to call a dish light and indulgent all at the same time?  This pasta is a cinch to get on the table and is full of bright, fresh flavor while still tasting a bit rich.  I’ve basically dummied this recipe down out of pure laziness and we love the results.  I keep going back to it not only because I can count on everyone enjoying it (my non-asparagus loving daughter actually devours it in here) but because it requires minimal ingredients and couldn’t be more simple to throw together.  It’s on the table in 15…total score!

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SONY DSC

SONY DSC

Asparagus and Pancetta Pasta

adapted from this recipe

Ingredients

12 Ounces Quinoa Spaghetti + 1 Cup of the Cooking Liquid

4 Ounces Pancetta or Bacon, chopped

4 Garlic Cloves, finely chopped or pressed

1/2 Cup Finely Grated Parmesan

1/3 Cup Heavy Whipping Cream

1/4 Cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil

3 Tablespoons Fresh Lemon Juice

Crushed Red Pepper, for garnish *optional

Chopped Fresh Parsley. for garnish *optional

Directions

Bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Add pasta and cook until just cooked thru but still firm to the touch.  Drain, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid from the pot.

While pasta is cooking heat a large skillet or dutch oven over medium high heat.  Add the pancetta and cook until it begins to brown and crisp up; remove from pot and drain on paper towel.  Drain all but 2 teaspoons of the grease, return the pot to medium high heat and add the asparagus.  Cook asparagus, stirring often, until it is crisp-tender, about 2-3 minutes.  Stir in the garlic and cook for 30 seconds.  Add pasta and pancetta back to the pot and stir.  Add parmesan, cream, olive oil and lemon juice and stir to combine.  Mix in 3/4 cup of the reserved cooking liquid, adding more if the pasta seems dry.  Top with crushed red pepper and parsley.  Serves 4

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