Although I like to cook up something special for Sunday supper, I’m not always able to spend a whole afternoon at the stove. This week’s Lemony Linguine with Salmon and Asparagus is a special meal without being overly fussy.
The recipe begins by roasting salmon fillets, and here’s a quick tip – I usually roast more than I need for the pasta so I have leftovers to toss into a salad later in the week.
Salmon and other fish fillets can be roasted at 425 degrees for 10-12 minutes, depending on the thickness of the fillets. If the salmon isn’t skinless, roast it skin-side down on a foil-lined baking sheet. When the fillets are done roasting, the skin will stick to the foil, and all you need to do is insert a spatula between the skin and the flesh of the fish to easily remove it.
Whenever I make pasta, I always scoop out about a cup of the pasta water before draining the pasta. This way, if the sauce is thicker than you’d like, it can be thinned with some of the reserved pasta cooking water to get it to the right consistency.
Some fresh basil leaves are stirred into the pasta just before serving.
LEMONY LINGUINE WITH SALMON AND ASPARAGUS
For the Salmon:
1 pound salmon fillets
Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
Heat oven to 425 degrees. Line a baking sheet with foil and place salmon, skin-side down, on the foil. Brush with olive oil and season with the salt and pepper. Roast for 10-12 minutes. Set aside while you prepare the pasta.
For the Pasta:
9 ounces refrigerated linguine
1 bunch thin asparagus, cut into 1-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
Zest from 1 lemon and
Juice of 2 lemons (about ⅓ to ½ cup lemon juice)
2 egg yolks
1 cup half and half
¾ cup shredded Asiago or Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
2 tablespoons butter
½ cup fresh basil leaves, sliced into thin slivers
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the linguine and cook according to package directions. Add asparagus during the last minute or two of cooking. Reserve 1 cup of the pasta cooking liquid, then drain.
Combine the egg yolks, cream, shredded cheese and lemon juice and zest in a bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper.
Return the pasta to the pot over medium-low heat. Add the butter, stirring until all noodles are coated. Stir in the salmon and lemon juice-egg yolk mixture and slivered basil. Add the reserved pasta water until the sauce is the desired consistency. Taste and add additional salt and pepper, if necessary.
Makes 4 servings.