Penne con Asparagi e Pomodorini (Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes)

30 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes
  • Yield: 4-6 servings 1x


  • 1 pound penne
  • 1 bunch fresh asparagus
  • 12 ounces cherry tomatoes
  • 1 small onion, finely chopped
  • 1 clove of garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • Salt, to taste
  • Freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 46 leaved fresh basil, coarsely chopped
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese, grated

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  1. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
  2. Rinse the asparagus under cold water, and peel (or remove) the hard part of the stem. Cut them into bite-sized pieces, setting the tips to the side.
  3. Rinse the tomatoes and cut into halves.
  4. Rinse and pat dry the basil, coarsely chop. Set aside.
  5. In a large skillet over medium heat, saute the onion and garlic until translucent. Add the tomatoes, raise the heat and allow to soften for a couple of minutes. Add the asparagus stems, cover with a lid, and cook for ten minutes. Add the tips and cook for a few more minutes, until all are tender. Add salt and pepper to taste.
  6. Cook the pasta until al dente (two minutes less than the package recommends). Drain the pasta, retaining some of the cooking water. Add the pasta to the asparagus mixture and cook for another minute, adding some of the cooking water if it seems dry.
  7. Sprinkle with basil and Parmigiano

Ed's Review

O, beware, my lord of jealousy! It is the green eyed monster, which doth mock the meat it feeds on.

Othello 3iii

I'm really not trying to make you jealous, because that would slowly gnaw at you, as the Bard so artfully described in Othello. So be happy for me, and feed off of my travels. I was recently in Stratford-upon-Avon, Shakespeare's home. The above quote was one of dozens written on a local pub’s walls.  It was a perfect summer afternoon, with boats lazily floating on the river, swans lounging nearby on the its banks, and the Royal Shakespeare Company a stone’s throw away, preforming Julius Caesar. Wow!

On many a menu were fresh local asparagus, which many establishments combined with either pasta or risotto. No offense, but I tried the asparagus, but not the pasta. I was, after all, en route to Rome and eating pasta in Stratford would have been akin to watching Shakespeare in Italy just before visiting England!

So don’t mock yourself, and instead grab some green-eyed asparagus, and make everyone else jealous of your delicious summer delight!

Buon Appetito!

2 thoughts on “Penne con Asparagi e Pomodorini (Asparagus and Cherry Tomatoes)”

  1. Great dish for easy summer eating – without a whole bunch of calories. Watching my waistline these days; as it has grown large enough to watch me back. The recipe Ed is almost as superb as your introduction to it. Praises to the Bard and your inspired writing.


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