Being an individual who would not lean into cooking repetition, I’ve moments the place I neglect various kinds of meals even exist. That’s, till I bear in mind, and I then spend a couple of weeks obsessed. Take, for instance, this asparagus pasta salad. I had forgotten that pasta, in what we name a ‘salad,’ was a factor. That’s till I used to be grocery buying, desperately hungry, and picked up a premade model from the chilly case. And thus, my present pasta salad obsession was born. 

Close-up side photo of a asparagus pasta salad with chickpeas and farfalle pasta

Asparagus pasta salad

I am identified so as to add numerous greens to my pasta salad. Nevertheless, this time of yr, when spring and summer time overlap, is for asparagus. This asparagus pasta salad options considered one of my favourite mixtures. There may be the tail-end of the asparagus season and the start of basil. Whereas I shared a hot pasta dish, I figured it was time to share this mixture in a chilly dish as properly! 

The 2 are a terrific taste mixture, each assertive in their very own manner. In fact, in the event you take a look at the recipe, you may see I’ve used a couple of assertive flavors within the general recipe—this pasta salad is multifaceted! 

Asparagus Remedy 

The important thing to utilizing asparagus for pasta salad is specializing in texture. I just like the asparagus to be tender however nonetheless maintain form and have only a little bit of chunk—no mushy asparagus, please!

To do that, I like to recommend a sizzling grill or broiler. The excessive warmth creates good browning on the skin with out utterly melting the asparagus. I additionally wish to deal with the scallions in the identical manner, creating crispy bits of onion taste to accompany the asparagus items. 

The Pasta

When it comes to pasta, I like shapes which are simple to eat in a single stab of a fork, seize onto any dressing, and have nooks out there for vegetable items. These needs are why I sometimes attain for farfalle, in any other case generally known as bowtie. The pleats of the pasta make it excellent for capturing dressing and asparagus items.

As a bonus, in the event you’re on the lookout for a enjoyable challenge, you can try making this shape. We’re not choosy right here; if you have already got a pasta form you want available, use that. 

Wide photo of a asparagus pasta salad with chickpeas and farfalle pasta

Garlicky-Preserved Lemon Dressing

Relating to the dressing, I choose one thing luscious that coats the noodles properly. I do not skimp on the olive oil after I go for a extra acid-based dressing, just like the one featured on this recipe. 

For this dressing, the olive oil absorbs the garlic and preserved lemon taste and evenly distributes it to the pasta, asparagus, and chickpeas. If you do not have preserved lemon, use a strong squeeze of lemon juice and an excellent quantity of zest.

Chickpeas + Asparagus Pasta Salad = Love. 

After I eat a pasta salad, it is sometimes an entire lunch. As such, I wish to spherical out the dish with protein. This manner, I can pack it in a cooler, take it on the street, and have a filling lunch after a hike. 

Past this position, chickpeas assist add only a little bit of texture. In comparison with beans and lentils, chickpeas have extra construction. This little bit of firmness helps add simply sufficient distinction to the pasta, making a layer of textures to maintain issues attention-grabbing.

Close-up side photo of a asparagus pasta salad with chickpeas and farfalle pasta
Asparagus
  • 8 ounces asparagus (226g)
  • 2-3 scallions (60g)
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Dressing
  • ¼ cup olive oil (60ml)
  • 2 garlic cloves (minced)
  • 1-2 tablespoons minced preserved lemon
  • 1 tablespoon champagne or different mild vinegar
  • 2 teaspoons sugar
  • Kosher Salt (if wanted)
Salad
  • 8 ounces pasta (226g)
  • 1 cup cooked and drained chickpeas (165g)
  • 2 ounces of crumbled feta (56g)
  • ¼ cup loosely packed basil (8g, plus extra for serving)
  • Coarsely cracked black pepper (for serving)
  1. To prep the asparagus: Preheat your broiler on excessive.

  2. Trim the ends from the asparagus and scallions. If the asparagus and scallions are thicker, run your knife down the size, chopping every stalk in half. Then slice each, on the bias, 1 ½” to 2″ lengthy items–a dimension just like the size of the pasta you might be utilizing.

  3. Place the sliced asparagus and scallions on a sheet tray. Drizzle with olive oil, add the salt, and toss till properly coated. Place underneath the broiler and prepare dinner till the asparagus and scallions are starting to char, 2-3 minutes (however watch rigorously—the time is determined by your broiler and the way distant the tray is from the warmth supply). Take away and let cool barely.

  4. To make the dressing: Measure the olive oil right into a small pot over medium warmth. Add the minced garlic cloves and prepare dinner till aromatic, 1-2 minutes. Take away from the warmth and stir in preserved lemon, vinegar, and sugar. Style and add salt as wanted.

  5. To assemble the salad: Deliver a pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and prepare dinner till al dente. Drain and place in a big bowl. Add the broiled asparagus, chickpeas, feta, basil, and dressing. Toss properly to mix and let relaxation for not less than 20 minutes earlier than serving. End with extra basil and black pepper.

Salt within the dressing will rely primarily on how a lot salinity your preserved lemons deliver to the dressing. Style and modify as wanted. If not utilizing preserved lemons, swap in 1-2 tablespoons lemon juice, 1 teaspoon lemon zest, and round ½ teaspoon kosher salt.

Close-up side photo of a asparagus pasta salad with chickpeas and farfalle pasta



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