Fettuccine with Asparagus Ribbons and Lemon Creme Fraiche
2 pounds asparagus
2 cups homemade chicken stock
1 cup crème fraiche
1 teaspoon freshly grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1 cup finely grated Grana Padano
1 pound fresh homemade fettuccine
Cut the 2-inches of the tips off the asparagus cutting diagonally into ½-inch pieces. Bring a pot of salted water to a boil and boil the asparagus until almost tender and bright green, 2 minutes. Drain immediately.
With the remaining asparagus spears, shave as much of the asparagus as you can with a vegetable peeler and reserve the shavings in a bowl. With the remaining centers of the asparagus, cut them coarsely and place them in a saucepan with the chicken stock. Place over medium heat and simmer until the asparagus is very tender and pale colored and ½ cup of the chicken stock remains, 15 to 20 minutes.
In a small bowl, combine the crème fraiche, lemon zest, lemon juice and season with salt. Reserve.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, 2 to 4 minutes. Drain immediately and place in a large bowl. Add the shaved asparagus, cooked asparagus tips, chicken stock and a handful of the Grana Padano. Toss together.
Serve immediately garnished with a sprinkling of the Grana Padano and a dollop of the crème fraiche. Serve the remaining Parmigiano separately at the table.
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