Fettuccine with Asparagus and Salmon

24 Jan

It’s nine degrees as I type this. Nine. And it was a very, very cold weekend–DH took our son to a Boy Scout event and the poor kids’ dishwashing water was frozen.

You’d think I’d break out the Crockpot for a steaming bowl of chili or chicken and sausage. I, however, wanted something lighter. Maybe I’m living out some summer fantasies at the dinner table, but when I came across a recipe for a very light pasta, fish, and veggie dinner, I had to try it.

This started out differently–I substituted broth for water, added lemon (and then more lemon), upped the asparagus-to-noodle/fish ratio substantially, and tossed in some fresh basil that wasn’t called for in the original recipe. I also cooked the fish differently than the original recipe called for (they wanted you to nuke plain salmon–um, yuck) and spiced it up a bit.

The result was good. It could use a little something, though. Next time, I’ll toss in a pint of halved cherry tomatoes. I added some more lemon when I reheated this on night 2 and that helped a lot, so I’ve adjusted the recipe accordingly.

We got three dinners out of this, which makes me happy on a weekend. I served it with some steamed broccoli and a glass of red wine. Knowing it’s diet-friendly is our little secret. 😉

This is a great, simple dinner that’s perfect any time of year. I would absolutely serve it to company with a side of hearty garlic bread (adding in those cherry tomatoes). To make it. you’ll need:

1 pound fettuccine

2 pounds asparagus, cut into one-inch pieces

2 tsp olive oil

5 cloves garlic, minced

1/4 tsp red pepper flakes (these will not make this hot–I promise!!)

1/2 cup hot chicken broth

1/4 tsp salt

2 6-oz salmon fillets, skinless

2 tsp lemon pepper

The juice of 2 lemons

A handful of fresh basil leaves

Heat your oven to 350 degrees. Sprinkle the lemon pepper all over the salmon, coating both sides, and place it into a small casserole dish sprayed with cooking spray. Bake it for 15 minutes or so, until it’s cooked through. Let cool. (I did this step in the morning and set it in the fridge all day).

Get a large pot of water boiling, salt it liberally, and cook fettuccine until it’s al dente (start on the sauce while this goes). Drain well.

In a large skillet (I used my Calphalon Everyday pan), heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and red pepper flakes and saute about 2 minutes–don’t let the garlic brown! Add asparagus and saute about 2 minutes, stirring constantly. Add hot chicken broth and salt, cover pan, and let cook about 2 more minutes. Uncover, let it go one more minute, stir in the lemon juice, and remove it from the heat.

Use your fingers to break the salmon apart into chunks. Add to sauce mixture. Return fettuccine to its cooking pot and pour sauce over it. Toss together and serve with a little grated Parmesan cheese, if desired.

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