Spaghetti with Seared Asparagus


  • 8ounces dried spaghetti
  • 2tablespoons olive oil
  • 2tablespoons butter
  • 1 1/2bunches asparagus (12 oz.), washed, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
  • 6cloves garlic, minced
  • 1/3cup hazelnuts or almonds, toasted and coarsely chopped*
  • 1/3cup panko bread crumbs
  • 1/3cup finely shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese (1 oz.)
  • 3tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2teaspoon cracked green or black peppercorns
  • 1tablespoon hazelnut oil (optional)
  • 1tablespoon chopped Italian parsley
  • Directions

    1. Cook pasta according to package directions. Drain, reserving 1 cup cooking liquid; set aside.
    2. In a deep 12-inch skillet heat oil and butter over medium-high heat. Add asparagus; cook 5 minutes or until almost tender and beginning to blister, stirring occasionally. (Butter will turn golden brown.) Add garlic; cook 1 to 2 minutes, until garlic is golden and asparagus is blistered.
    3. Meanwhile, heat a small skillet over medium heat. Add hazelnuts and panko. Cook 8 minutes or until golden, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat; transfer to a bowl. Stir in cheese.
    4. Add spaghetti, lemon juice, peppercorns, and salt to skillet with asparagus; toss to combine. Add enough reserved cooking liquid to reach desired consistency. Sprinkle with half the panko mixture; toss again. Top with remaining panko mixture. If desired, drizzle with hazelnut oil. Sprinkle with parsley. Makes 6 servings. *Tip: To toast nuts, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread nuts in a single layer in a shallow baking pan. Bake 10 minutes or until golden, stirring once. Transfer to a kitchen towel. Rub to remove skins.

    From the Test Kitchen


    To toast hazelnuts, preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Spread nuts in a single layer in a shallow baking pan. Bake about 10 minutes or until slightly golden, stirring once. Place warm nuts on a clean kitchen towel. Rub the nuts with the towel to remove the loose skins.


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