Pasta con i Fagioli della Soia e Asparago

 Pasta with Soy Beans and Asparagus
P.S. I used mostly yellow tomatoes that were left over from my garden, 
so your pasta dish will come out looking redder.

Personally, I don't really like thick, sweet marinara sauce most of the time. I prefer the light and tangy sauce made by combining fresh tomatoes, garlic and basil. The lightness of the sauce below really lets all of the flavors shine through, the pesto adds a creaminess and the edamame adds a nice nutty flavor. As a side note, cooking veggies in olive oil with lemon, pepper flakes and a little bit of salt, as below, makes a really great side dish.  Buon appetito!

Serves 3

10 Roma Tomatoes, Roughly Chopped
4 Tbsp. Pesto (I'll try and post a recipe for some pesto soon!)
3 Tbsp. Olive Oil
1 Small Handful (about 12) Pitted Mediterranean or Kalamata Olives, Roughly Chopped
1 Bag Frozen or 1 Bunch Fresh Asparagus Chopped into 1" Lengths (see this tip on preparing fresh & frozen asparagus)
1 Bag Frozen, Shelled Edamame,
1/2 Tsp. Pepper Flakes
Juice of 1/2 of a Lemon
1/2 Box of Penne, Farfalle (Bow Tie), or Fusilli Pasta ***for a gluten free option, be sure to use pasta marked gluten free.
Salt to Taste
Water for boiling

Heat 2 Tbsp. of olive oil in a deep sided frying pan over medium heat. Add in the tomatoes and pesto and stir until mixed well. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cover. In a separate frying pan, heat one tbsp. of olive oil over medium-high heat. Thaw the edamame and asparagus (if using frozen) then toss into the pan along with the pepper flakes and lemon. Cooking the veggies over medium-high heat allows them to caramelize a little, which adds great flavor to the dish. Once a bit caramelized (browned in spots) add the veggies to the tomato sauce, along with the olives. Stir well, taste, and add salt, if needed. Cover again. Reduce the heat to low and allow the sauce to simmer and reduce. While the sauce is simmering, fill a medium sauce pan half way full with water. Cover and bring to a boil. Add in pasta and boil until al dente. Drain the pasta and toss it with the sauce. If your pan is big enough, add the pasta to the sauce and toss in the frying pan, otherwise, return the drained pasta to the sauce pan and pour the sauce over it, tossing in the sauce pan. Buon lavoro! Mangiamo!


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