Tomato and Asparagus “Carbonara”

I found this recipe in the September 2012 issue of Cooking Light and I couldn’t wait to make it.  It took very little prep or time to make and it ended up being creamy, cheesy, and totally delicious.  I loved that, even though it didn’t have bacon like a traditional carbonara has, it was still flavorful and satisfying.  My husband, son, and I all loved it.  My daughter, on the other hand, thought it was too cheesy and she didn’t like the texture.  It’s no surprise since she doesn’t like cheese.  Oh well… her loss. 

Cook the pasta in salted boiling water per instructions.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat.  Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally for 5-6 minutes; add the asparagus and cook for 2 minutes.  Add the minced garlic and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute.  Remove from the heat.

Mix the egg, Parmesan cheese, sea salt, freshly cracked pepper, to taste until well combined.  Drain the pasta and immediately add the cheese/egg mixture to the pasta and stir until well combined and the cheese has melted.  Add the tomato and asparagus mixture to the pan and mix until evenly coated.  Place pasta into the serving bowl and sprinkle the top with the torn basil leaves.  Serve immediately.  Enjoy.

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Tomato and Asparagus "Carbonara"

Yield: 4

Prep Time: 5 min.

Cook Time: 12 min.

Total Time: 17 min.

Ingredients:

8 oz whole wheat penne pasta, cooked per instructions
2 tsp olive oil
1 pint of grape tomatoes
1 lb asparagus, ends removed and cut into thirds
3 cloves of garlic, minced
Sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste
1/2 cup of Parmesan, Asiago, Romano cheese mixture
1 large egg
Several fresh basil leaves, torn

Directions:

Cook the pasta in salted boiling water per instructions.

While the pasta is cooking, heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the tomatoes and cook, stirring occasionally for 5-6 minutes; add the asparagus and cook for 2 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the minced garlic and season with sea salt and freshly cracked pepper, to taste; cook, stirring constantly, for 1 minute. Remove from the heat.

Mix the egg, Parmesan cheese, sea salt, freshly cracked pepper, to taste, until well combined. Drain the pasta then place back into the cooking pot and immediately add the cheese/egg mixture to the pasta and stir until well combined and the cheese has melted. Add the tomato and asparagus mixture to the pasta and mix until evenly coated. Place pasta into the serving bowl and sprinkle the top with the torn basil leaves. Serve immediately. Enjoy.

Adapted recipe and photos by For the Love of Cooking.net
Original recipe by Cooking Light - September 2012