Farfalle With Spring Veggies and Toasted Crumbs

Serves 4 (makes about 6 cups).

Note: You have lots of options with this easy pasta. If you are not an asparagus fan, broccolini can stand in. The sour cream can be full-fat, low-fat or nondairy, to meet your needs. But don’t go fat-free, and don’t cook it any longer than it takes to warm it. Panko breadcrumbs are larger and lighter than the traditional version, which could be substituted. From Robin Asbell.

• 1/4 c. sliced almonds

• 1/4 c. panko (see Note)

• Salt

• 2 tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided

• 1/2 lb. farfalle (bow-tie shaped pasta; 4 c.)

• 1 large carrot, peeled, slivered and cut in 1-in. pieces

• 1/2 bunch asparagus, cut into 1-in. pieces (see Note)

• 1 c. grape tomatoes, halved

• 2 garlic cloves, minced

• 2 tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped

• 1/2 c. frozen peas or edamame, thawed

• 1/2 c. sour cream, full-fat, low-fat or nondairy (see Note)

• 1/2 c. fresh parsley, chopped


Put a large pot of salted water to boil for the pasta.

Chop the almonds into small bits and combine in a cup with the breadcrumbs and 1/4 teaspoon salt. Drizzle 1 tablespoon olive oil into a large skillet, add the almond mixture and place over medium heat. Stir constantly until the crumbs are golden and fragrant, then transfer to a small bowl to cool.

Cook the pasta according to package directions, about 11 minutes.

Wipe that same skillet with a paper towel. Drizzle in the remaining 1 tablespoon olive oil and place over medium heat. Add the carrots and stir for 10 minutes. Add the asparagus, tomatoes, garlic, thyme, peas or edamame, and 1/2 teaspoon salt. Stir for 2 to 3 minutes, until the asparagus is crisp tender.

When the pasta is cooked, drain well and add to the pan with the vegetables; toss to mix. When everything is hot, stir in the sour cream and parsley, and mix to coat. Serve immediately, topped with the almond mixture.