If the weather is lovely where you are, this is one great recipe to take on a sunny picnic. And for those of us who are still contending with chilly weather, we can make this colorful Mediterranean-style recipe for an indoor meal, knowing that the steamed fresh spring veggies in a simple garlic sauce can help us to stay healthy and happy.
“Primavera” means spring. Asparagus and spinach are just two of the vegetables to add their springtime nourishment to this great dish.
1 pound pasta shapes, such as tricolor rotelle or penne
1 small bunch broccoli florets, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup asparagus tips, cut into 1-inch pieces
1 cup cauliflower, cut into bite-size pieces
1 cup fresh spinach, torn into bite-sized pieces
3/4 cup red bell pepper, cut into 2-inch julienne strips
3/4 cup peas, fresh or frozen
Garlic Cream Sauce
1 or 2 cloves garlic, crushed
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup olive oil
1/4 cup heavy cream
1. Cook the pasta until al dente, according to package directions.
2. Lightly steam the broccoli, asparagus, and cauliflower until crisp-tender, just a few minutes.
3. Combine pasta, broccoli, asparagus, cauliflower, spinach, bell pepper, and peas in a large bowl.
4. To make the Garlic Cream Sauce, mix the garlic, lemon juice, and salt in a food processor. With the machine running, slowly add the oil until the mixture is thick. Blend in the heavy cream and pour this sauce over the pasta and vegetables. Toss well to combine.
5. Chill for at least 1 hour.
Serves 8 to 10.