This asparagus & watercress miso spaghetti, loaded with peppery watercress, crisp asparagus and a flavorful miso sauce, only takes 30 minutes to make.
I’m so excited to share this recipe with you. It’s one of my most unique pasta recipes to date, and it’s perfect for making the most of our last days of Spring – because there really aren’t that many days left. It also utilizes some unique ingredients – watercress and miso.
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Until now, I hadn’t actually cooked with watercress before. I’ve had it many times at restaurants and loved everything it’s been in, but I had never actually purchased it at a grocery store. Miso, on the other hand, it one of my favorite ingredients. I’ve used it in so many recipes, like my miso roasted salmon and my maple miso vinaigrette. But, I realize that it might not be used in everyday American cooking, so I still consider it a “new” ingredient.
If you’re having trouble finding miso paste, try your local Asian grocery store. I found mine in the freezer section. Want to know more about miso? Check out this article.
Have you tried cooking with watercress before? At first, I thought it would be similar to spinach, but it wasn’t even close. It has so much more flavor, and it’s slightly peppery. Yes, it wilts in a similar manner, but its stems hold up to the heat, make it a more substantial leafy green for your Spring recipes.
I thought it was a little bit hard to find it at my grocery stores – I think only one store actually carried it – but that’s what happens when you living in a small city with a meat-centric culture, I guess. It comes in bunches or in bags, and I found it near the non-salad greens like Swiss chard and mustard greens.
Just a quick FYI, watercress goes bad pretty quickly. I must have gone through eight bunches while testing and photographing this recipe. So try to use it the day you buy it, or at the very least, the day after. It also helps if you store it properly.
- e pasta according to package directions for al dente in a large pot of boiling water.
- With 2 minutes remaining in the cooking time, add asparagus. Reserve 1/2 cup pasta water before draining.
- Drain when pasta has reached al dente.
- In a large skillet , melt butter and olive oil over medium-high heat. Add shallots and sauté, stirring frequently, until softened – about 5 minutes.
- Add miso and 1/4 cup pasta water, stirring until incorporated into sauce is smooth.
- Add watercress, pasta and asparagus to skillet and toss until coated. Add remaining pasta water as needed to thin sauce (optional).
- Stir in fresh basil before serving.
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