Monday, May 23, 2011

Pasta Primavera

I loved this dish.  It was so good and flavorful.  Next time, I think I'll even reduce the parmesan cheese and I'm sure it will still be wonderful.  This was a little stressful to put together, only because I was watching 3 pots on the stove at the same time- the pasta boiling, the white sauce, and the sauteed veggies.  It was hard for me to sautee the veggies without burning, by the way, I think I was just too busy with everything that I didn't stir them as often as they needed.  I was having a stressful day anyway; I think if I had gone into this more relaxed, it wouldn't have been harder than any other meal.  Anyway, everything ended up coming out just wonderful, even if there were burned bits on my veggies.  

I made this and brought it (and the kids) to my husband's work one night last week, when he was working late.  We all had a picnic with paper plates and this pasta (and a small amount of these gluten-free cookies for dessert!)  Next time we do a picnic, I'm just making sandwiches, lol.  This was really good, though, and I will definitely make it again!

You can add any veggies to this- I added some of the suggested ones, left out some, and threw in some of my own.  I roasted the asparagus first in the oven, but next time I'd probably just throw it in with the other veggies on the stove, because you couldn't really taste the roasted flavor, with all of the other flavors going on. I only used one bell pepper, omitted the mushrooms, and added asparagus. 

Pasta Primavera
from The Family Kitchen

1 – 12 oz package penne, whole wheat if you can get it (I can't)
the florets from one head of broccoli
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
2 cups or 1 small package cremini or button mushrooms, sliced (optional)
about 12 spring onions, sliced
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, or 1 small packaged, halved
1/2 pound (or small bunch) asparagus (optional)
3 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon butter
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk
1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese (start with one cup and add more if desired)
1 teaspoon dried Italian herbs
salt and pepper to taste

1. Prepare pasta according to package directions.

2. Preheat a large skillet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and add all vegetables, except spring onions and tomatoes. Saute until tender crisp. Add spring onions and tomatoes. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes more.

3. In a separate large skillet, melt 1 tablespoon olive oil and one tablespoon butter. Whisk in flour. Add salt and pepper. Add dried herbs. Whisk while cooking for 2 – 3 minutes. Whisk in milk and continue to whisk while bringing to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and whisk in Parmesan cheese. Remove from heat.

4. In a large bowl, add cooked pasta, sauteed vegetables and cheese sauce. Toss well to combine and serve.

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