Creamy Asparagus and Pancetta Penne | Marlene Maurer – Lakewood, Colo. |

Creamy Asparagus and Pancetta Penne | Marlene Maurer – Lakewood, Colo.

2 tbsp. all-purpose flour
2 tbsp. butter, softened
1 tsp. olive oil
2 oz. chopped pancetta
1 package sliced cremini mushrooms
1/4 c. white wine
1 tsp. salt, divided
4 c. unsalted chicken stock
3 c. low-fat milk, divided
12 oz. whole wheat Penne, uncooked
1 bay leaf
1 c. frozen green peas
12 oz. asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 tbsp. fresh thyme, chopped
1 tsp. grated lemon rind
3/4 tsp. black pepper

Combine flour and butter in a bowl until paste forms.
Place a large high-sided saute pan over medium-high heat.
Add oil to pan; swirl to coat.
Add pancetta and cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
Add mushrooms; saute 5 minutes or until browned and liquid evaporates.
Add wine; cook 2 minutes or until liquid is absorbed, stirring to loosen browned bits.
Stir in 1/4 tsp. salt and transfer mixture to a plate.
Add stock, 2 c. milk, penne and bay leaf to pan; bring to a boil.
Cook 8 minutes, stirring occasionally.
Stir in peas, asparagus and 1/2 tsp. salt; cook 2 minutes, stirring frequently.
Stir in remaining salt, milk and thyme; cook 2 minutes.
Add butter-flour paste, in pieces, stirring constantly to combine and thicken.
Remove from heat; stir in mushroom mixture, parsley, rind and black pepper.

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