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Buttery pasta with asparagus, pancetta and freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano. Need we say more?

While the American South may be the acclaimed master of all things meat, there’s no excuse for passing on the produce. From picnic sides and pickles to fresh garden salads, soups and desserts, the fruit and vegetable bounty of the South is beautifully represented in The Southern Vegetable Book, a new collection from author, writer and TV personality Rebecca Lang.

I love pasta that’s easy enough for a weeknight supper but pretty enough for company. This classic combination of pancetta and asparagus is dressed with a luxurious butter sauce, or al burro in Italian. Buy authentic Parmigiano-Reggiano, and you’ll be glad you did.

Reprinted with permission from The Southern Vegetable Book