If you’ve been following along on my instagram account, you’ve probably noticed I’ve been doing a lot of travel this year. Only a couple of months ago I was in Portugal shooting the first set of episodes of Style Jaunt in Lisbon, which have recently been released and you can now watch on Flare.com HERE. A few weeks ago I found myself in Mexico exploring the land, the people, and the shopping for the 2nd set of the series which will be released in the fall.
I had organized with my boyfriend to pick me up from Porter as soon as I landed back in Toronto after a night in Montreal upon flying back from Mexico. We headed straight to my cottage for a relaxing weekend alone, where we could unplug and just enjoy each other’s company. In reality, this resulted in 2.5 days of me sleeping more than I was awake. While my travel pictures may look relaxing, behind the scenes we’re working away and pulling VERY long hours each day.
Since my cottage is located in south-western Ontario, we are surrounded by farms and I always look forward to stocking up on fresh seasonal produce every time I’m there. On our way back into the city we stopped at a local market and picked up everything fresh they had from the neighbouring farms. At this time of year, that meant asparagus and rhubarb!
On the entire car ride home I couldn’t stop thinking about what I would make with the rhubarb. Since neither of us have much of a sweet tooth I didn’t want to make a typical crumble or pie, and wondered about what I could make that would be a savoury dish that would feature rhubarb as a star ingredient.
I searched my cookbooks and even asked my chef friends for ideas…but was coming up short with ideas that weren’t traditional or too complicated. So eventually I turned to the trusty google machine and typed in ‘rhubarb and asparagus recipe’ and there popped up a wonderful sounding pasta salad recipe from the Washington Post that seemed to be exactly what I was looking for and offered something not only savoury, but easy to make too.
I thought this pasta was such a nice, fresh way to enjoy rhubarb and a summer-y salad and decided to share it with all of you to try. Here is the recipe for how to make a delicious Roasted Rhubarb and Asparagus Pasta Salad:
What You Need:
- Kosher or sea salt
- 8 ounces dried farfalle (bow-tie) pasta
- 4 ounces baby spinach leaves (may substitute stemmed regular spinach leaves)
- 2 medium rhubarb stalks (about 8 ounces total)
- 8 ounces asparagus
- 2 large cloves garlic
- 2 tablespoons olive oil, plus more as needed
- 1/2 teaspoon sea salt, or more as needed
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes, or more as needed
- 1 small handful basil leaves
- 1 small handful sorrel leaves (may substitute your favorite fresh herb)
What To Do:
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Bring a pot of water to a boil over high heat. Add a generous pinch or two of kosher or sea salt, then the pasta. Cook to al dente according to the package directions.
- Meanwhile, coarsely chop the spinach, placing it at the bottom of a colander set in the sink.
- Combine the following ingredients in a mixing bowl as you work: Trim off and discard the rhubarb ends, then cut the stalks into 1/2-inch pieces. Trim any tough ends from the asparagus, then cut the spears into 1-inch pieces. Mince the garlic.
- Add the 2 tablespoons of oil, the 1/2 teaspoon of salt and the 1/2 teaspoon of crushed red pepper flakes to the bowl; toss to coat and distribute evenly. Spread the mixture on a rimmed baking sheet; roast for 6 to 8 minutes or just until fork-tender. (You don’t want the rhubarb to break apart.)
- Drain the pasta into the colander, pouring the cooking water over the spinach. Give the colander a good shake, then transfer the wilted spinach and pasta to a serving dish.
- Add the roasted rhubarb mixture to the serving dish. Stack and roll the herb leaves tightly, then cut them into ribbons (for a total of about 4 tablespoons); add to the serving dish. Gently toss the whole mixture; taste and add oil, sea salt and/or crushed red pepper flakes as needed.
- Serve warm or at room temperature.
Don’t you just love something that basically involves throwing things in the oven? This is such an easy pasta to make! If you can’t find sorrel leaves, you may want to replace it with dandelion (as I did) or arugula. To serve I paired the pasta with a quick tomato salad with fresh basil, salt, pepper, olive oil and a splash of balsamic vinegar, and some roasted sausage from the farm. Of course you can just enjoy it all on its own. Either way, all I can say is…YUM!
Hope you enjoy!
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