We streamlined this recipe to focus on three star vegetables instead of a garden variety. Roasting the vegetables intensifies their flavor and also simplifies the preparation and cleanup. Look for precut matchstick carrots in the produce section of your grocery store. A small amount of cream per serving is the ticket to an incredibly rich and tasty, yet healthful, pasta dish.
1 1/2 pounds asparagus spears
1 cup matchstick carrots
1/2 medium sweet onion, halved and thinly sliced (about 1 cup)
1 teaspoon bottled minced garlic
1 teaspoon olive oil
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 pint grape tomatoes
8 ounces uncooked penne (tube-shaped pasta)
3/4 cup whipping cream
2/3 cup grated fresh Parmesan cheese
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 450°.
Snap off tough ends of asparagus, and cut asparagus into 1-inch pieces. Combine asparagus and next 3 ingredients in a large roasting pan. Drizzle with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper; toss gently to coat. Bake at 450° for 15 minutes or until vegetables begin to brown, stirring vegetables after 10 minutes. Add tomatoes, and cook an additional 5 minutes.
While vegetables roast, cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain well, reserving 1/3 cup pasta water.
Combine vegetables, pasta, reserved 1/3 cup pasta water, and whipping cream; toss gently to coat. Sprinkle with cheese. Serve immediately.