Asparagus and Sun-dried Tomato Penne. A bit of lemon, a bit of cream, and a bit of spice with a lot of flavor!
Recipe Contributor – Feline Frenzied (Instagram)
I love asparagus. Especially roasted or sauteed asparagus. Growing up we always had it boiled, so it repulsed me. But a few years ago I was introduced to roasted asparagus and it was like I was eating an entirely different vegetable.
And now that the cooler weather is upon us, asparagus is on sale at the grocery store! It seems to always be plentiful around the holidays so this pasta dish is a must make when you want a break from all the traditional pumpkins and squashes. And honestly, do we need a reason to eat pasta?
The asparagus pairs well with sun-dried tomatoes. Although this recipe includes a vegan cream-based sauce, it is very light tasting with the addition of white wine, lemon and basil. Red chili flakes add a bit of heat and a bunch of flavor.
So of course I’m curious as to the origins of sun-dried tomatoes.
After a little research, I learned that tomatoes were originally salted and dried for preservation. Salting and evaporating the moisture out of tomatoes (as with most foods) significantly delays the process of decomposition. So many years ago, by drying ripe tomatoes, the tomatoes could be enjoyed in the winter and provide valuable nutrition when it was difficult or impossible to grow fresh produce.
However, the true origin of sun-dried tomatoes is unclear. Italians originally dried their tomatoes on their ceramic roof-tops in the summer sun. Sun-dried tomatoes surged in popularity in the United States in the late 1980s to early 1990s, becoming a trend before losing popularity from overuse by the end of the 1990s.
So maybe history says they lost popularity, but I still think they are divine. And added with a little wine in a cream sauce, I mean, yum! Asparagus and Sun-dried Tomato Penne couples all those flavors into delicious pasta dish. And while asparagus is on sale, this is a must make recipe.
And if you’re on the hunt for pasta dishes, feel free to search for “pasta” using the top menu, or simply click here!
Asparagus and Sun-dried Tomato Penne
- 8 ounces penne use gluten free penne if following a gf diet
- 1 bunch asparagus washed, ends trimmed, then cut into 2 inch pieces
- 2 tbsp vegan butter
- 1/2 cup non-dairy creamer
- 1/4 cup white wine or vegetable broth
- 2 cloves garlic minced
- 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes
- 1/4 cup sun-dried tomatoes chopped
- 1/2 cup vegan parmesan cheese
- 2 tbsp lemon juice about 1/2 a lemon
- 2 tbsp fresh basil finely minced
- salt and pepper to taste
- Cook pasta according to package directions. Reserve 1/2 cup of pasta water.
- While pasta is cooking, heat a large skillet over medium high heat. Add vegan butter and saute asparagus, garlic and red pepper flakes for 2 to 3 minutes, season with salt & pepper. Add white wine and cook for 1 to 2 minutes to allow alcohol to burn off. Add non-dairy creamer and reserved pasta water.
- Reduce heat to medium, and continue to cook for approximately 3 to 4 minutes, stirring occasionally.
- When the pasta is ready, drain and add to the asparagus. Add sun dried tomatoes, chopped basil and lemon juice, stir to combine. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Cook until heated through, approximately 1 to 2 minutes.
- Remove from heat. Stir in vegan parmesan cheese. Let sit for a few minutes before serving. Sprinkle with additional vegan parmesan if desired.
- I used sun-dried tomatoes packed in oil. If using dried tomatoes, rehydrate in hot water for a few minutes before use.
- If you don’t want white wine you may substitute with vegetable broth.