Oh Olive Garden...how I love thee! There's not a ton of my favorite ingredient (cheese!), but this still rocks my world. Enjoy!
1/2 lb Italian sausage, sweet or hot, casing removed
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lb asparagus, fresh
1/2 cup heavy cream
1 lb rotini pasta, cooked according to package directions
2 Tbsp butter
Parmesan cheese, grated
Salt and pepper to taste
HEAT oil in non-stick sauté pan. Add sausage. While sausage is cooking, break up with spoon. When sausage is completely cooked, drain fat.
CUT bottom 2” off asparagus stems (the inedible part), then cut remaining stem into 1” pieces. Boil asparagus until tender in a separate pan. Drain and allow to cool. Remove tips from asparagus and set tips aside.
COMBINE asparagus and heavy cream. Simmer 10-12 minutes over medium heat.
ADD hot, drained pasta to asparagus cream sauce. Add parmesan and butter. Add cooked sausage and sauté until simmering. Salt and pepper to taste.
TRANSFER to large platter. Garnish with asparagus tips and serve.