Creamy Bagna Cauda and Crunchy Vegetables Over Pasta

Bagna cauda originates in the Piedmont region of Italy, where diners traditionally dip fresh vegetables in a hot broth of garlic oil flavored with anchovies. Here, the broth tranforms into a pasta sauce, with the vegetables incorporated.

4 1/2 pounds Barilla Collezione Casarecce
24 cloves garlic, boiled in milk
30 anchovy fillets
2 1/4 cups extra-virgin olive oil
3 cups heavy cream
beurre manie, as needed
salt and pepper
3 quarts bias-cut baby zucchini, blanched
3 quarts bias-cut asparagus, blanched
1 1/2 quarts bias-cut celery hearts, blanched
6 tablespoons micro Italian parsley
  1. Cook the Barilla pasta for half the time indicated on the package. Drain pasta and drizzle with some olive oil to prevent from sticking. Place pasta flat on sheet trays or hotel pans and cool in a blast chiller. Alternatively, cool it down in a walk-in cooler. Store in zip lock bags or sealed plastic container; refrigerate and use within several hours.
  2. In a pot, bring the garlic, anchovies, and oil to a simmer. Let cool, then puree the mixture and pass it through a find-mesh sieve. Discard the solids.
  3. Bring the cream to a low boil, then whisk it together with the bagna cauda. Thicken slightly with beurre manie, if desired. Season with salt and pepper.

For each serving, to order:

  1. Bring about 1/4 cup sauce to a simmer.
  2. Reheat 1 1/4 cups pasta in simmering water.
  3. Drain and add it to the sauce with 1/2 cup each zucchini and asparagus and 1/4 cup celery.
  4. Season and toss to coat.
  5. Plate and garnish with parsley.