Time: 25 min prep; 20 min cook
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 bundle asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 large garlic clove
1 cup spinach leaves, tough stems removed
1/4 cup walnuts
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1/4 cup olive oil
2 tsp. (half a large lemon) fresh lemon juice
1 lb. mezzi rigatoni (original recipe calls for 1/2 lb.)
ricotta to top
1. Bring a large pot two-thirds full of salted water to a boil over high heat. Add the asparagus and cook just until fork-tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the asparagus to a colander and rinse under cold water. Reserve the pot with the water.
2. Set about one-fourth of the asparagus aside and add the remainder to a food processor. Add the garlic, spinach, walnuts and Parmesan and process until finely chopped. With the machine running, drizzle in the olive oil and process until well combined. Stir in the lemon juice and season with salt and pepper.
3. Bring the large pot of water you used to cook the asparagus back to a boil over high heat. Add the pasta and cook according to the package directions. Drain well and transfer to a large bowl. Stir in the asparagus pesto and the reserved asparagus pieces. Taste and adjust the seasoning. Transfer to a serving bowl and garnish with the ricotta salata shavings. Serve immediately. Serves 4.
Original recipe from: