- 1 pound spiral-shaped pasta
- 1 pound slender asparagus spears, trimmed, cut into 1- to 1 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/4 cup olive oil
- 1 tablespoon finely grated lemon peel
- 2 teaspoons chopped fresh tarragon plus more for garnish
- 1 5- to 5 1/2-ounce log soft fresh goat cheese (the pre-crumbled stuff will not melt as well)
- Fresh lemon juice to taste (optional)
- Cook your pasta in a large pot of well-salted water until it is almost tender, or about three minutes shy of what the package suggests. Add asparagus and cook until firm-tender, another two to three minutes. Drain both pasta and asparagus together, reserving one cup of pasta water.
- Meanwhile, combine olive oil, lemon peel, tarragon and cheese in a large bowl, breaking up the goat cheese as you put it in. Add hot pasta and asparagus to bowl, along with a couple slashes of the pasta water. Toss until smoothly combined, adding more pasta water if needed. Season generously with salt and pepper, and lemon juice if you feel it needs a little extra kick.