Stretch out asparagus
Last updated at 20:32, Thursday, 12 April 2012
Asparagus is coming into season shortly so here’s a fresh and light dish for you.
Asparagus can have the reputation for being quite expensive but this dish stretches it out, making just one bunch feed four.
500g bunch asparagus, each spear trimmed and cut into three pieces
2 tbsp olive oil
6 slices pancetta, roughly chopped – if you cannot get hold of pancetta, use smoked bacon
1 punnet cherry tomatoes, halved
Good handful basil leaves
Salt and pepper
Heat oven to 200C.
Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil on the stove top. Boil the pasta in the salted water according to the packet instructions.
Put the asparagus into a roasting tin, toss with the oil and pancetta. Roast for 10 mins until the pancetta starts to crisp up. Stir in the tomatoes, then return to the oven for five minutes.
Drain the pasta, then add to the roasting tin along with the torn basil leaves and a good amount of seasoning. Stir well until everything is coated with a kind of light tomato dressing.
Serve in bowls, scattered with grated Parmesan. This would be great served with a crisp green salad and our jazzed-up foccacia breads.
2 foccacia bread
3 cloves garlic, crushed
1 handful of fresh parsley, chopped
100g softened butter, extra for greasing
1 red chilli, deseeded and finely chopped
½ punnet cherry tomatoes, finely sliced
2 balls fresh mozzarella, sliced, then torn into rough pieces
Preheat the oven to 220C.
Mix together the garlic, parsley and softened butter. Roughly slather over the foccacia breads. Sprinkle with the red chilli and finely sliced tomatoes, trying to cover the breads evenly. Top with the torn mozzarella.
Put the breads on a greased baking tray and bake in the oven for around 15 to 20 minutes until the cheese is bubbling.
First published at 19:24, Thursday, 12 April 2012
Published by http://www.timesandstar.co.uk