Monday, April 11, 2011

Noodles and Company Asparagus & Lemon Linguine

My absolute favorite fast casual restaurant is Noodles and Company. Last year they had a dish called Asparagus and Lemon Linguin, which was absolutely delicious. My husband found the recipe on the company's website and I immediately saved it in my pile of recipes to try. As soon as asparagus came back into season, this was at the top of my list.  It is full of nice crisp vegetables and unique flavor. Once you have assembled and prepped  all the ingredients, this dish comes together in a few minutes.
This is definitely on our list to try again. While the original recipe calls for shrimp, which we don't care for, I used chicken.

Noodles and Company Asparagus & Lemon Linguine
(from Noodles and Company)
1 lb of linguini pasta
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 cloves fresh garlic, minced
1/3 cup chicken stock
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1 bunch (about 1- 1 1/2 pounds) aparagus
1/2 a red onion sliced
1 cup snap peas
1 cup button mushrooms, sliced
kosher salt (to taste)
crushed red chilies (to taste)
3 chicken breasts, cooked and sliced ( I used a Forman grill)
2 tablespoons basil chiffonade (thinly shredded)
4 tablespoons crumbles feta cheese
3 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

Cook the pasta to al dente (make sure there is still some chew to the noodles or they will turn to mush later). Drain and toss with 1 tablespoon of the olive oil, set aside.

Snap off the ends of the asparagus stocks and throw away the ends. In a pot of boiling water,  blanch (cook) the asparagus for 1 minute, remove the stocks and shock them in ice water to stop cooking. Drain, cut each stock in half, and set aside.

Take a large- 14 inch- saute pan (frying pan will work) and heat it over medium heat. Once the pan is hot add the rest of the olive oil. Toss in the garlic, red onions, and mushrooms and cook until slightly caramelized and brown. Add a pinch of the red chilies and the chicken. Add the noodles and stir. Then deglaze the pan with the stock. When this begins to sizzle, add the balsamic vinegar, snap peas, asparagus, and basil. Toss and stir. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Place on a platter and top with the crumbled cheese.  Serve with lemon wedges on the side, I liked it with a fresh bust of lemon on top as well as the lemon flavor in the dish.

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