BS over at Endless Simmer inspired me. I’m usually the one that is struggling to figure out a technique, usually it’s my friends that suffer from my failures and misunderstandings. But this time around I was happy for once it wasn’t me going, “What the fuck?!” So learning from someone else is a welcome change.
In this instance it’s simply peeling asparagus so you can toss it with some pasta. Basically your making noodles out of ‘gus and in theory not only is it sexy meal, but it’s delicious. Don’t worry too much about cooking or blanching the ‘gus, the cool crisp texture of the strands brings this dish together. This is a Jamie Oliver recipe I’ve been itching to try for ages now, but just never really got around to have the right set of ingredients. But it’s spring, I’ve been trying to O.D. on crab (unsuccessful) and you have to love a good summer pasta dish.
Ingredients (amount per person):
linguine or long pasta of choice
one aspargus spear: shaved with spear heads saved
one handful finely shredded fennel bulb
1 Tbsp crushed fennel seeds
2/3 cup crab meat
juice and zest of 1/2 lemon
1 big pinch finely minced chili
glug of olive oil to flavor crab and finish pasta
Kitchen Soundtrack: TV on the Radio – Dear Science
One of my favorite parts of this dish is that you can prep just about everything ahead of time. Shave your fennel and asparagus saving the spear heads as a garnish. Finely chop your chili. Zest your lemon. Pick the tops off your whole fennel. Done? Ok, so we’re already about 75% finished with this dish.
Crush up your fennel seeds and toss into a pan with your peppers, shaved fennel, and zest. Bring your pot of water to a boil.
Stir in crab meat and add lemon juice and olive oil. Now instead of heating the crab through yourself, Oliver makes a good recommendation: Just toss your dry pasta in the salted water and put your bowl/pan over the water. Stir to heat crab. Season with salt/pepper and add lemon juice.
Once pasta is cooked, toss your linguine in with the crab mix, add a little pasta water if you want to lighten the “sauce.”
Plate pasta and garnish with peeled aspargus, leftover chilies, ‘gus spear heads and fennel greens. Glug olive oil and you have a really fantastic lunch.