8 oz thin asparagus, trimmed and cut into 2-inch pieces
1 3/4 cups peeled and matchstick-cut carrots
1/2 tsp fresh ground black pepper, divided
1/4 tsp sea salt, divided
10 oz grape tomatoes, halved (about 1 3/4 cup)
2 small shallots, thinly sliced
1/2 tsp dried thyme
7 oz whole-grain fettuccine
1 tbsp organic unsalted butter
2 cloves garlic, finely chopped
2 tbsp white whole-wheat flour (TRY: King Arthur’s White Whole Wheat Flour)
1 1/2cups whole milk
1/8 tsp ground nutmeg
3 oz Parmesan cheese, grated (about 3/4 cup packed), divided
Zest of 1 small lemon
8 oz grilled or broiled boneless, skinless chicken breasts, sliced
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives (TIP: If chives aren't available, try fresh thyme, tarragon, parsley or basil instead.)
In a large skillet on medium-high, heat 1/2 tbsp oil. Add asparagus and cook, stirring frequently, until lightly browned, 2 to 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup water, bring to a simmer and cook for 1 minute. Add carrots, 1/4 tsp pepper and 1/8 tsp salt; continue cooking, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are crisp-tender, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to a medium bowl. Add remaining 1/2 tbsp oil to skillet, still on medium-high. Add tomatoes, shallots, thyme, remaining 1/4 tsp pepper and 1/8 tsp salt; cook, stirring frequently, until tomatoes soften slightly, about 3 minutes. Transfer to bowl with asparagus mixture and set aside.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente according to package directions. Before draining, ladle about 1 cup pasta cooking water into a heat-proof measuring cup and set aside. Return pasta to pot, off the heat.
Meanwhile, in a medium saucepan on medium, melt butter. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 1 minute. Add flour and stir until completely absorbed, about 1 minute. Grab a whisk and slowly pour in milk as you whisk. Increase heat to high and whisk almost constantly, breaking up any clumps of flour, until milk comes to a simmer. Add nutmeg. Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer, whisking frequently until slightly thickened (consistency should be similar to heavy cream), 3 to 4 minutes. (TIP: If you're not ready to use the sauce immediately, turn off the heat and cover the pan to prevent a skin from forming.)
To pasta in pot, add sauce and about 1 oz cheese; stir until pasta is well-coated. Stir in about 1/4 cup reserved pasta cooking water to loosen sauce and keep texture creamy. Add additional water in 1/4 cup increments to reach desired consistency. Stir in vegetables and lemon zest. Divide among serving bowls and sprinkle evenly with remaining 2 oz cheese. Top with chicken and chives.
Serving Size: 1 1/2 cups fettuccine alfredo, 1/2 cup chicken
We've taken your favorite classic carbonara and reinvented it with the same velvety texture that you're used to - but without the cream. Fresh asparagus adds a touch of color and texture, while chicken sausage stands in for bacon to provide meaty flavor.