Penne with Asparagus, Scallions, Peas and Prosciutto

IMG_1142_Web

I  couldn’t wait. I tried to wait until asparagus arrived at the farmers market, but the beautiful, green bunches of asparagus at Whole Foods were calling my name. This winter has just been so brutal that I felt I deserved a meal featuring those bright, grassy flavored stalks of spring.

Not only is this dish a celebration of spring, it takes very little time to prepare and it doesn’t need a side.

1 TB. olive oil
1 bunch of asparagus, ends trimmed, stalks cut into 1/2 inch pieces
5 scallions, chopped
1 cup frozen or fresh peas
5-6 cloves of garlic, minced
12 oz. penne
1/4 lb. prosciutto, torn into small pieces
1/4 – 1/2 cup of half and half or heavy cream
Parmesan

Bring salted water to a boil and add the penne. Cook for 10-12 minutes to al dente (read the directions on the box for an accurate time). Save 1/2 cup of reserved cooking water for your sauce.

While the penne is cooking, heat olive oil in a pan and add asparagus, scallions and peas. Saute for 3-4 minutes until slightly tender. Add garlic and saute for another 30 seconds to 1 minute.

When the penne is finished drain the pasta and toss it in the pan with the vegetables and add the prosciutto. Add a little bit of the reserved cooking water, some half and half or cream and season with a bit of salt and ground pepper. Mix and taste to see if you like the consistency of the sauce. You can always add a little bit more water or cream depending on your preference. Sprinkle with Parmesan cheese to serve.