I've been reading a lot about minimalism and decluttering in recent years. I admire minimalists, but I know I'll never be a real one. Though I like to keep my possessions down to MY minimum, I'll never get them pared down to the point where I can actually count them.
|Hazel-Atlas Glass Company, Pattern Number 1305, Ball & Ribbed Design|
Snack Plate and Cup Set aka Snack Sip and Smoke Set
Why will I never be a minimalist? I'm in the business of food, and that involves a lot of equipment. But I'll be cutting back. Really. I will. In the meantime, finally, here's ...
Farfalle with Chicken and Spring Vegetables
8 ounces farfalle (bow-tie pasta), cooked according to package directions
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces
3/4 teaspoon salt, divided
3/4 teaspoon coarsely-ground black pepper, divided
2 tablespoons finely minced shallot
3/4 pound thin asparagus, cut into 1½-inch pieces
1/2 pound young sugar snap or Chinese pea pods
1 large red bell pepper, julienned
1/2 cup dry white wine
1/2 cup heavy cream (I use Organic Valley)
1 to 3 tablespoons chopped fresh dill, more for garnish
1/2 cup freshly grated (not shredded) Parmesan
1 Forty-five minutes before serving time, start heating 4 quarts water with a tablespoon of salt for cooking pasta. Prepare ingredients.
2 Five minutes before adding pasta to the boiling water, start sauce. In 12-inch skillet which has a lid, heat olive oil. Pat dry the chicken pieces and season with 1/4 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Add to hot oil and cook, stirring, over medium-high heat until lightly browned, about 5 minutes.
3 Add minced shallot and continue cooking for a minute or two. Add wine and deglaze pan. Add asparagus (except tips), pea pods, red bell pepper and 1/2 teaspoon each salt and pepper. Cover and cook over medium heat until vegetables are nearly crisp-tender, about 2 or 3 minutes.
4 Uncover and stir in asparagus tips, cream and dill. Simmer for 2 minutes. Stir in Parmesan; taste and adjust seasoning (it's important to stir in the Parmesan before adding more salt). Pour over hot, drained pasta. Mix well, divide onto four warm plates, and garnish with more dill and Parmesan.
(Recipe first posted 09 May 2013. I was making it this week and thought I'd see if I couldn't take a better photo of it than I did three years ago. Not sure that I did! New one at top of post, old one just above the recipe.)