Asparagus and bright lemon give a rich dish a fresh spin. Mascarpone cheese is an Italian cream cheese. It usually comes in a plastic tub and is available at most supermarkets. Grana Padano is a hard Italian grating cheese similar to Parmigiano-Reggiano but with a less bold flavor and a lower price.
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Serve with a Classic Caesar Salad.
Loved the flavors of this but can only give it three stars because of the following reasons. First, as noted by other reviewers, it turned out dry. I used the amount of fresh pasta called for in the recipe. It was too much. I think if I make this again I will add the pasta in increments until I get to a good ratio of pasta to sauce. Second, this is prep intensive and makes a huge mess. But the flavor was good. I did add chopped garlic to the scallions & asparagus mixture. And I was generous with the fresh thyme.
Expensive Ingredients, lots of work, and the flavors overpower each other. I don't usually follow a recipe to a "T", but this time I did and I regret it. You don't need to use Mascarpone. Cream Cheese will do just fine. Maybe put the pine nuts on the top so you get maximum flavor from them. The Grana Padano Cheese is hard without much oil, so mixing bread crumbs with it resulted in a dry, dusty topping. Maybe next time mix the breadcrumbs with a little butter first, or omit bread crumbs and just top with extra cheese. It was okay, but not the awesome dish that I expected and wanted it to be. Definitely serves at least 6.This was my approx. cost:Grana Padano $6Mascarpone $5Pine Nuts $5Asparagus $8Pasta $2.50Lemon $0.50Misc. $2TOTAL: $29
Sounds good, but OH! the fat and calories. Check it out.
Made this for a vegetarian guest the other day. I used the info in the linked article to prep all the ingredients ahead, then mixed and baked just before she arrived. It has great, full flavor, and even my (anti-vegetarian) husband loved it. But "serves four"?! I don't think so. More like six to eight. We're still working on leftovers.
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