Roasted Asparagus and Tomato Penne Salad with Goat Cheese
4 servings (serving size: about 1 1/4 cups pasta mixture and 2 tablespoons cheese)
Photo: John Autry; Styling: Leigh Ann Ross
2 cups uncooked penne or mostaccioli (tube-shaped pasta)
12 asparagus spears
12 cherry tomatoes
4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
3/8 teaspoon kosher salt, divided
1/2 teaspoon black pepper, divided
1 tablespoon minced shallots
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon dried herbes de Provence
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
1/2 cup pitted kalamata olives, halved
2 cups baby arugula
1/2 cup (2 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 400°.
Cook pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat; drain and set aside.
Place asparagus and tomatoes on a jelly-roll pan. Drizzle with 1 tablespoon olive oil; sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper. Toss gently to coat; arrange asparagus and tomato mixture in a single layer. Bake at 400° for 6 minutes or until asparagus is crisp-tender. Remove asparagus from pan. Place pan back in oven, and bake tomatoes an additional 4 minutes. Remove tomatoes from pan; let asparagus and tomatoes stand 10 minutes. Cut asparagus into 1-inch lengths; halve tomatoes.
Combine shallots and the next 4 ingredients (through honey) in a small bowl, stirring with a whisk. Gradually add remaining 3 tablespoons oil, stirring constantly with a whisk. Stir in remaining 1/8 teaspoon salt and 1/4 teaspoon black pepper.
Place pasta, asparagus, tomato, olives, and arugula in a large bowl; toss. Drizzle juice mixture over pasta mixture; toss. Sprinkle with cheese.
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I was looking for something light for dinner and came across this, which was perfect! Although two of us ate about 3/4 of it... As someone suggested, I added some toasted slivered almonds, and pine nuts would be good too. I also cut the tomatoes before roasting. The other change was putting the herbs on the veggies before roasting. Really brought up the flavor of my aged herbes de provence, and gave me flexibility about how much dressing to add. Very flexible; yes, to feta or parmesan, also grilled chicken or shrimp.I'd agree that it's pretty enough to serve for company. Not to mention that it can be made in advance, which make it great for a potluck, especially as it's veggie and could easily be vegan.
I love this recipe and highly recommend it for summer meals -- as a main dish or an accompaniment to grilled chicken or seafood. It is the perfect combination of greens, pasta, and vegetables; great flavor and color combination. I have made it several tines and find myself going back to it time after time as a great dish for entertaining. In the future, I plan to try it with Greek or Italian seasoning, and Feta or Parmesan cheese for variation. When asparagus is out of season, I expect green beans would work equally well.