Shrimp and Asparagus Pasta With Herb-Cream Sauce

8 ounces angel-hair pasta or thin spaghetti
2 tablespoons kosher salt, for pasta water
2 tablespoons butter
2 tablespoons olive oil
2 cups sliced cremini mushrooms
16 ounces extra-large shrimp, shells removed, tails left on
Salt and pepper, to taste, or favorite all-purpose seasoning
8 asparagus spears, cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup sherry or white wine
4 wedges light herb-and-garlic cheese or 6 ounces cream cheese
1 1/2 cups fat-free or regular half-and-half or fat-free milk
4 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

Bring a large pot of water to a boil and add the kosher salt. Add the pasta and cook until al dente, about 6 to 7 minutes. Reserve 2 cups pasta water; drain pasta.

Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the butter and oil over medium-high heat. Add the mushrooms and cook until just tender, about 5 minutes. Add the shrimp and saute 4 minutes or until cooked through; season with the salt and pepper to taste. Add the asparagus and saute 2 minutes or until crisp-tender.

Transfer all ingredients to a plate. Add the sherry or wine and scrape up any bits on bottom of skillet over medium-high heat. Reduce heat to low and add the cheese and half-and-half. Cook, stirring, over low heat until cheese is melted to a saucelike consistency. If too thick, thin with pasta cooking water.

Add cooked ingredients back to skillet and toss to heat through and coat with sauce.

Serve in large serving bowls sprinkled with the parsley.

Makes 4 servings.


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