Asparagus Bundle Pasta
This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Albertsons Companies. The opinions and text are all mine.
This post is sponsored by Safeway and features their exclusive debi lilly designed flowers and jars along with O Organics® products. I shop for these products at my local Safeway store.
In my old age, I’ve changed my flower strategy when it comes to special occasions like Valentine’s Day (coming up). I get it. Roses are the standard and they are just fine, but I’ve found I can actually spend less money and come away with something a bit more personalized if I buy a mixed flower bouquet and make my own arrangement.
The debi lilly design collection offers Safeway shoppers a great assortment of vases and pre-arranged flower bouquets that make this pretty simple. I bought the pretty gold and turquoise vases I used in this post and the flowers for about $25 total from my local Safeway! Not bad and I think they turned out really unique and pretty.
But also, cook something delicious for your special someone (or yourself – treat yoself, right)!
This fun asparagus bundle pasta is A) relatively easy and failsafe and B) very delicious and unique. It combines two of my favorite things: bacon wrapped asparagus bundles and a simple cacio e pepe spaghetti! YUM!
1) Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with foil. Wash your asparagus well and trim off about two inches from each end. Wrap 4-5 spears with a single strip of bacon. Try to get it as tight as possible so it stays together in a bundle. Place each bundle on a baking sheet with the ends of the bacon under the spears so it doesn’t come unwrapped.
2) Bake asparagus bundles for 20-25 minutes until the bacon is cooked through and turning crispy and the asparagus are cooked well.
3) Meanwhile, cook spaghetti in salted water (1 tablespoon kosher salt per two quarts of water).
4) To make simple sauce for spaghetti, add olive oil, butter, and black pepper to a large skillet over low heat. Swirl together until butter is melted. Add pasta water from and swirl to combine.
5) When pasta is done, use tongs to move it straight from the cooking water to the skillet and toss to combine. Add parmesan cheese and continue to toss with tongs. The sauce should thicken a bit and just stick to the spaghetti. If it’s too watery, let it cook over low heat in the skillet for 30-60 seconds, tossing constantly. If the sauce is too thick and gummy, add more pasta water by the 1/4 cup to thin it slightly.
6) Serve pasta piled high on plates and top with a few asparagus bundles and fresh basil.
Asparagus Bundle Pasta
This recipe only has a few ingredients. The thing that takes the longest is the asparagus bundles. Trim off the ends and wrap them in bacon. Use one strip per about 4-5 spears of asparagus. Wrap them tightly and place them on a foil-lined baking sheet.
These will need to bake at 375 degrees F. for about 20-25 minutes. I recommend turning them once halfway through to ensure even cooking.
Meanwhile, you can make the spaghetti!
The sauce for this spaghetti couldn’t be simpler. It’s just olive oil, butter, pepper, and Parmesan and you use the water from cooking the pasta to pull it all together. It’s a really classic Italian simple sauce that any spaghetti lover will dig into.
Once your butter melts in your skillet, swirl in about 1/2 cup of pasta water and the sauce will start to thicken a bit from the starch in the pasta water.
When your spaghetti is done, move it straight from the pot to the sauce skillet. Toss everything together well with tongs and finally add the Parmesan cheese!
Now comes the taste and adjust portion of the spaghetti. The sauce should just stick to the spaghetti, but not pool much. If it seems really watery, cook it in the skillet, tossing constantly with tongs, and it will firm up and thicken in about a minute.
If the sauce seems gummy and thick, add more pasta water by the 1/4 cup to thin it out.
If you’ve nailed it, the sauce is almost unnoticeable, but trust me. It tastes good!
Remember those asparagus bundles?
Plating everything together is easy enough. Garnish the whole thing with fresh basil and extra Parmesan and your lover will love it.
The debi lilly design collection offers a huge assortment of vases and pre-arranged bouquets that you can use to make your own arrangements. Head to your local Safeway and make something special this Valentine’s Day!