Ahhhh, spring. One of my favorite things about you is the new vegetables. Beans, peas, fennel, new potatoes… this is when I venture back out to the farmers’ market after too many months spent eating kale and winter squash. Everything is just beginning – the farmers and the customers are all getting warmed up for the bounty that’s coming our way in summer. But to ignore spring because we’re so excited about tomatoes and stone fruits would be a mistake. There are so many delicious new veggies making their appearance right now.
So, while at the King Street Farmers’ Market I decided to take advantage of the new season by throwing together a tasty, healthy pasta dish. I picked up whatever looked good from the market and my grocery store and ended up with fennel and green beans. I had originally planned to augment the dish with frozen peas, but apparently I ran out. (How did that happen?) So I tossed some corn in there instead and put goat cheese on my portion for extra calcium and protein. This was supposed to be our Easter dinner (in our non-ham-eating household, we go non-traditional and focus on spring flavors instead of the “quintessential” Easter ham feast). But neither of us was hungry at dinnertime on Easter, so it became a weeknight meal instead – and was plenty easy and quick enough to throw together after work. I love those multi-tasking meals, the ones that are fancy enough to serve for a special occasion but easy enough to make on a random Wednesday. Hope you like this one!
Roasted Spring Vegetable Pasta
2 fennel bulbs, cleaned, trimmed and thickly sliced
1 bunch green beans, cleaned and chopped
1-2 tablespoons olive oil
kosher salt and fresh pepper
1 cup frozen peas or corn
handful dried linguini strands
goat cheese (optional)
fresh herbs (optional)
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Line a baking sheet with tinfoil. Toss fennel, beans, oil, salt and pepper until vegetables are well-seasoned. Roast for 20 minutes, tossing once midway through.
- After vegetables have been roasting 20 minutes, add frozen corn or peas and toss to combine. Roast an additional 10-15 minutes, checking often, until vegetables are cooked to your satisfaction.
- Meanwhile, bring a pot of water to a boil and salt generously. Add linguini (or other pasta, but I think the long flat strands work best) and cook according to package directions.
- When linguini isal dente, remove from water and place in bowls. Remove vegetables from oven and top with generous portion of vegetables. If desired, garnish with crumbled goat cheese and/or fresh herbs.
Yield: Serves 2-4 as a main course.
Source: Covered In Flour
(Nota Baker: You don’t need to follow this recipe exactly or use the precise vegetables I’m calling for. These are the vegetables I used – or, in the case of the peas, wanted to use but was cruelly thwarted. Use what you like, what you have on hand, or what looks good at the market. Like all of my fridge-clearing recipes, this pasta is versatile and will be great with whatever vegetables you want to use. Don’t feel wedded to what I did! I just called for these vegetables in the recipe because that’s what I used, and there’s a picture up there, and I didn’t want anyone to say “Hey, I see beans in there, how come they’re not in the recipe?” Okay?)