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Fettuccine with Prosciutto and Peas

Linguine Primavera

By Barbara Beltrami

Much as we enjoy those heavy long-simmered sauces that satisfy and comfort us during the long winter season, those of us who love pasta also love to inject some spring flavors and colors into our warm weather sauces. Of course, pasta primavera with its combination of seasonal veggies is high on the list but there’s also pasta with lemon and fresh herbs with its bright citrusy flavor or pasta with prosciutto and peas. Just think spring, more delicate pasta shapes and not a lot of cooking and it all comes together.

Pasta with Lemon and Fresh Herbs

YIELD: Makes 4 servings


1 pound thin spaghetti

2/3 cup fresh herbs such as parsley, dill, tarragon, basil, or chives, chopped

Grated zest of one lemon

1 garlic clove, minced

3 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice

1/4 cup olive oil

1 cup thinly sliced blanched asparagus

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese

DIRECTIONS: Cook spaghetti according to package directions. While it is cooking, in a large bowl combine the herbs, lemon zest, garlic, lemon juice, oil, asparagus and salt and pepper. When the pasta is ready, drain it and add half a cup of its cooking water to the lemon mixture; immediately add hot pasta and cheese to the skillet and toss to combine; transfer to a large bowl. Serve hot with a cherry tomato salad.

Fettuccine with Prosciutto and Peas

YIELD: Makes 4 servings


1 pound fettuccine

1 stick unsalted butter

Leaves from one large sprig of fresh sage

8 ounces thin sliced prosciutto, torn into bite-size pieces

2 cups cooked fresh or frozen peas

Salt and freshly ground white pepper to taste

1 cup freshly grated Parmesan or Pecorino cheese

DIRECTIONS: Cook pasta according to package directions; reserve about 12 ounces of the cooking liquid. In a large skillet or pot, melt butter until frothy; add sage and prosciutto and cook, stirring occasionally, over medium heat until prosciutto begins to brown and get crispy, about 4 minutes. Drain pasta, then add reserved cooking water to prosciutto and sage mixture; over medium heat stir, then add pasta, peas, salt and pepper and cheese and toss until heated through and liquid is absorbed by pasta. Serve hot with an arugula, radicchio and Belgian endive salad.

Linguine Primavera

Linguine Primavera

YIELD: Makes 4 servings


1 pound linguine

1/2 cup olive oil

1/2 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes

4 scallions, thinly sliced

1 garlic clove, minced

1 bunch broccolini, washed, trimmed, chopped and cooked

4 baby zucchini, cut into 1” discs and cooked

4 asparagus spears, trimmed and cut into 2” pieces and cooked

1 1/2 cups wax beans, trimmed, cut into 1” pieces and cooked

2/3 cup fresh or frozen peas, cooked

1 cup canned or frozen (not marinated) artichoke hearts, quartered (and cooked, if frozen)

1 cup thinly sliced baby Bella mushrooms, cooked

1/2 cup finely chopped parsley

3 cups diced fresh tomatoes

1/4 cup chopped fresh basil leaves

Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

1/4 cup unsalted butter

3 tablespoons chicken broth

1/2 cup heavy cream

1/2 cup freshly grated Pecorino cheese

DIRECTIONS: Cook pasta according to package directions. Meanwhile, heat oil in a large skillet over medium high heat, add the hot pepper flakes, scallions and garlic and cook, stirring frequently, about one minute, until they release their aroma. Immediately add the broccolini, zucchini, asparagus, wax beans, peas, artichokes, mushrooms, parsley, tomatoes, basil, and salt and pepper and stir until veggies are heated through but not browned. Add butter, chicken broth, cream and cheese, and a little of the pasta cooking water; stir vigorously. Transfer linguine to a large bowl and toss with veggie mixture. Serve hot with a chilled dry white wine and bread sticks.