Asparagus Pasta Recipes

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Asparagus Stuffed Pasta with Fig Hazelnut Sauce Recipe

I don't know if you've noticed but I tend to prepare healthy meals fairly often. This is my husband Lulu's request and it was his New Year's resolution to change his eating habits. He's lost 25 pounds so far and he's trying to get back to his pre-marriage weight.

Yesterday, I boiled manicotti-like pasta (big pennoni rigati) and stuffed them with a mixture of yuba (tofu skin), green asparagus spears, yellow onions and curly parsley. After completing the vegan filling, I realized I needed a binder to be able to stuff the mixture into the cylinder-shaped pasta . 

While the pasta was boiling, baby Aria and I stepped outside and randomly harvested a few ripe figs in the garden. That's when I decided to prepare a sauce for this dish made of fresh figshazelnuts, tomato paste and roasted red bell peppers. The texture came out exactly as wonderfully as I had anticipated it would. Sometimes, improvisation ends up with beautiful results!  

 


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Cauliflower Asparagus Manicotti Pasta Recipe Recipe

I’ve been feeling kind of miserable since getting home from our trip to Paris. Not only have I caught a nasty cough, but I'm still heavily jet-lagged.  What’s worse, I haven't visited the gym in almost a month and I have a mountain of tasks I need to complete very soon before I become totally overwhelmed. As you may have guessed, my cure for most problems is cooking, and today, I made one of my favorite comfort foods, something creamy, cheesy and filled with vegetables: an asparagus and cauliflower manicotti pasta.

To reduce the amount of cheese, calories and guilt in the béchamel sauce, I blended cauliflower into the white sauce. Once softened, the cauliflower became very creamy and gave extra body to the dish. 


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Quinoa Spaghetti with Asparagus (Gluten Free Pasta) Recipe

Since I gave birth to Aria 13 months ago, I've been determined to shed the weight I had gained during pregnancy. It took 9 months to gain the weight, so I knew it was going to take quite some time, perhaps even longer to lose it all. Part of my strategy has been to eat vegetarian 2 to 3 times a week. As you can imagine, this has made my husband Lulu (who is a vegetarian) very, very happy. “Halfway there,” he says.

One of my favorite dishes to make on veggie days is gluten-free quinoa pasta. The pasta is awesome. It has a different texture, but I really enjoy it. For this dish, I sauteed tomato-flavored quinoa spaghetti in garlicky baby asparagus spears and added sunflower seeds as the main source of protein. I’ll be eating this dish even after I reach my target weight, but I’ll be sure to throw in some meatballs or chicken breast (and of course, I’ll share the recipe). Sorry, Lulu!

Asparagus Pasta Recipe with Picture


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Parsley-Walnut Pesto Penne Pasta with Asparagus Recipe

I had some leftover curly parsley from my stuffed tomatoes, and some walnuts leftover from my kiwi tarts, and I needed to figure out what to do with them. Pesto seemed like the perfect way to utilize the ingredients I had on hand. The parsley provided the green color and "herby" flavor typically delivered by the more commonly used basil.  I used the walnuts in place of pine nuts, and blended them with the parsley along with some olive oil. I added some walnut oil as well to accentuate the flavor of the whole walnuts and tossed the mixture with sautéed leeks and asparagus and mini penne pasta.

Finding ways to use not only your leftovers, but your leftover ingredients, will save you time and money. You just need to have a few flexible, go-to recipes in your culinary arsenal, and you'll be prepared to face whatever your refrigerator and pantry throw at you. Pesto is definitely one of those recipes.


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