Many of my friends tell me they are too busy to cook, especially during the week. In honor of them, and of people like me, who have found 2012 to be way more busy than they expected, here is a quick and delicious Spring pasta.
For those of you who have not experienced the culinary delight that is Burrata, it’s Mozarella mixed with cream, which creates this rich, soft cheese with a hint of sweetness. It makes a wonderful addition to pastas, salads, roasted vegetables, almost anything, really. In this pasta, I paired it with some steamed asparagus and lemon zest, which complemented the sweetness and richness of the Burrata well.
Burrata, Asparagus, and Mint Pasta
1 bunch of asparagus trimmed and cut diagonally into inch long pieces
8 oz of favorite pasta
Zest of 2 meyer lemons
Salt. ground pepper, and red chili pepper flakes to taste
2 tablespoons of mint finely chopped
Parmesan cheese for sprinkling
2 spoon fulls of Burrata
Boil pasta water with ample amounts of salt, and prepare the other ingredients. Place a steam basket in another pot and fill approximately 2 inches with water. Place pasta in boiling water and asparagus pieces in steam basket. Cook the asparagus pieces until just tender, depending on thickness, 3-6 minutes. Cook the pasta until al dente, both pasta and asparagus should be slightly under done because they will cook more once combined. Combine cooked pasta, and asparagus in a warm pot (the one you used to cook the pasta) and drizzle with olive oil. Mix in lemon zest, salt, ground pepper, and red chili pepper flakes. Lastly mix in mint and desired amount of Parmesan cheese. Once individual portions are served, add a small spoon full of Burrata to each plate.
If you wanted to do a lighter version of this dish, simply leave off the Burrata. The mint, lemon, and Parmesan make a lovely flavor combination on their own. Me, personally, I would never say no to Burrata, it’s the perfect ingredient to dress up a quick and easy week night dinner.
Until next week, Happy Meatless Monday!