Le Cirque’s Pasta Primavera

Prep Time: ? minutes | Cook Time: ? minutes | Total Time: ? minutes | Yield: Serves


  • Pasta Primavera
  • 1 bunch broccoli
  • 2 small zucchini, unpeeled
  • 4 asparagus spears
  • 1 ½ cups green beans
  • ½ cup fresh or frozen peas
  • ¾ cup fresh or frozen snow peas
  • 1 Tbsp peanut, vegetable or corn oil
  • 2 cups thinly sliced mushrooms
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tsp minced hot red or green chili, or ½ tsp dried red-pepper flakes
  • ¼ cup finely chopped parsley
  • 6 Tbsp olive oil
  • 1 tsp minced garlic
  • 3 cups seeded diced tomatoes, juices reserved
  • 6 basil leaves, chopped
  • 1 pound spaghetti
  • 4 Tbsp butter
  • 2 Tbsp chicken broth
  • ½ cup heavy cream
  • ½ cup grated Parmesan
  • ½ cup toasted pine nuts


  1. Trim broccoli and break into florets.
  2. Trim ends of zucchini, Cut into quarters, then into 1- inch lengths. (About 1 ½ cups)
  3. Cut each asparagus into 2-inch pieces.
  4. Trim beans and cut into 1-inch pieces.
  5. Cook each of the green veggies separately in boiling salted water to cover until crisp but tender. Drain well, then run under cold water to chill, and drain again. Combine the cooked veggies in a bowl.
  6. Cook the peas and pods about 1 minute if fresh, 30 seconds if frozen. Drain, chill with cold water and drain again. Combine with vegetables.
  7. In a skillet over medium-high heat; heat peanut oil and add mushrooms. Season to taste. Cook about 2 minutes, shaking the skillet and stirring.
  8. Add mushrooms, chili and parsley to other veggies.
  9. Heat 3 Tbsp olive oil in a sauce pan and add ½ garlic; tomatoes, salt and pepper. Cook about 4 minutes. Add basil.
  10. Heat 3 Tbsp olive oil in a large skillet and add remaining garlic and veggie mixture. Cook, stirring gently, until heated through.
  11. Cook spaghetti in boiling salted water until almost but not quite tender, retaining a slight resistance. Drain well.
  12. In a pot large enough to hold the spaghetti and veggies, add butter and melt over med-low heat. Then add chicken broth and half a cup each of cream and cheese, stirring constantly. Cook gently until smooth. Add spaghetti and toss quickly to blend.
  13. Add half of vegetables, and pour in the liquid from the tomatoes, tossing over a very low heat.
  14. Add remaining veggies. If sauce seems dry, add 3 to 4 Tbsp more cream.
  15. Add the pine nuts and give mixture a final toss.
  16. Serve equal portions of spaghetti mixture in bowls. Spoon equal amounts of tomatoes over each serving.


Recipe Origin:  Le Cirque’s Original famous recipe. I think I read it in the NYT years ago.

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