Pasta primavera is one of my favorite pasta dishes to make in the spring and summer. You can load it up with as many vegetables as you like. For this recipe, I used lots of bell peppers, broccoli, cremini mushrooms, spring onions and fresh tomatoes. Instead of adding cream, I made a lighter creamy sauce with Parmesan. For the sauce, I started it out like a béchamel, or milk gravy. Then I seasoned it with a little dried Italian herbs and added lots of Parmesan cheese. I also used whole wheat pasta for this dish to make it healthier, but you can use regular white pasta if you like.
Pasta Primavera Recipe
1 – 12 oz package penne, or other whole wheat pasta
the florets from one head of broccoli
1 green bell pepper, sliced
1 red bell pepper, sliced
1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
2 cups or 1 small package cremini or button mushrooms, sliced
about 12 spring onions, sliced
1 1/2 cups grape tomatoes, or 1 small packaged, halved
4 tablespoons olive oil
2 tablespoons flour
2 cups milk, I used plain soy
1 1/2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
1 teaspoon dried Italian herbs
salt and pepper to taste
1. Prepare pasta according to package directions.
2. Preheat a large skillet. Drizzle with 2 tablespoons olive oil and add all vegetables, except spring onions and tomatoes. Saute until tender crisp. Add spring onions and tomatoes. Cook for 1 – 2 minutes more.
3. In a separate large skillet, add 2 tablespoons olive oil. Whisk in flour. Add salt and pepper. Add dried herbs. Whisk while cooking for 2 – 3 minutes. Whisk in milk and continue to whisk while bringing to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and whisk in Parmesan cheese. Remove from heat.
4. In a large bowl, add cooked pasta, sauteed vegetables and cheese sauce. Toss well to combine and serve.