I'm sending this dish off to Presto Pasta Nights. Thanks to host Kait of Pots and Plots and to Ruth of Once Upon a Feast for coming up with the idea of Presto Pasta Nights!
Pasta with Goat Cheese, Roasted Asparagus, Sausage, and Lemon (inspired by Smitten Kitchen)
1 pound slender asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1- to 1 1/2-inch pieces
1/2 cup olive oil, divided
Freshly ground black pepper1 pound spiral-shaped pasta
3/4 pound chicken-lemon sausage (or sausage of your choice)
1 tablespoon finely grated lemon zest
Juice of 1 lemon
2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon plus more for garnish
1 8-ounce log soft fresh goat cheese
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Toss the asparagus with about 1/4 cup oil, salt, and pepper, and spread on a large baking sheet. Roast until just tender in the oven.
2. Cook the pasta in a pot of boiling, salted water. Reserve a cup or so of pasta water before draining.
3. Meanwhile, crumble the sausage or cut into small pieces and saute over medium heat until fully cooked through.
4. Prepare the sauce: combine the remaining 1/4 cup oil, lemon zest, lemon juice, and tarragon in a small bowl.
5. In a large pot, combine the drained pasta, roasted asparagus, sausage, lemon-oil sauce, and crumbled goat cheese. Mix well. Taste, and add additional salt, pepper, and lemon juice as needed. Add some pasta water if the dish is a bit dry.