Toss the pasta and vegetables immediately after cooking. The heat from the pasta will cook the egg, thickening it into a light, creamy sauce.
3 quarts water
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
1 pound (1-inch) diagonally cut trimmed asparagus
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved
2 ounces pecorino Romano cheese, finely grated (about 1/2 cup)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 large egg
8 ounces uncooked penne pasta
1/4 cup fresh basil leaves
How to Make It
Bring 3 quarts water to a boil in a Dutch oven.
Heat a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Add oil to pan; swirl to coat. Add asparagus; sauté 3 1/2 minutes. Add garlic; sauté for 1 minute. Add tomatoes; cook for 6 minutes or until tomatoes are tender.
Combine cheese, salt, pepper, and egg in a large bowl, stirring with a whisk.
Add pasta to boiling water; cook 10 minutes or until al dente. Drain and toss pasta immediately with egg mixture. Add tomato mixture, tossing until sauce thickens. Divide pasta equally among 4 bowls. Sprinkle each serving with 1 tablespoon basil. Serve immediately.
Wine Match: The bright, dry acidity of a sauvignon blanc will complement the grassy asparagus (and won't bring out an unflattering metallic taste). Try a fuller-bodied California wine like Simi Winery's Sonoma County Sauvignon Blanc ($14), with crisp lemon and rich tropical notes. --Gretchen Roberts
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