*This post is proudly created in partnership with Barilla.  May was Mediterranean Diet Month which was just ranked #1 best overall diet for the second year in a row. So this recipe was inspired by this special Month. Lucky for us pasta plays an important role in that diet. So really, it’s a diet I can get behind all year long.


If you could peer into the window on a weeknight in our home you’d probably see pasta on the table. And if you are peering through the window, just come on in because we would love to have you join us.

Pasta is my go-to weeknight meal when the cupboards and fridge are starting to look bare. I’ll often start by thinking about what vegetables I have and want to use with the pasta, from there I may add a protein sometimes in the form of an egg stirred into the sauce or the finished plate topped with a soft boiled egg. There is always some form of cheese and loads of fresh herbs.

To celebrate Mediterranean Diet Month Barilla asked if I would create a pasta using their “Italian Recipe Builder”. I realized that this beautifully illustrated flow chart is basically the same process that happens when it’s pasta for dinner. Using this chart you can create hundreds of different pasta recipes. I tend to add a bit more cheese but I don’t think the Italians mind. These are the sort of recipes I love. The ones that leave plenty of room for creativity and feel both comforting and virtuous.

I’m usually a purist when it comes to pasta but I really enjoyed the nutty heartiness from the whole grain linguine. If fresh salmon isn’t available smoked salmon works beautifully. Feel free to use dill or parsley in place of the chives.


Whole Grain Linguine with Salmon and Asparagus

Yield 6-8 servings


1 12 ounce box Barilla Whole Grain Linguine

Sea salt

1/4 cup olive oil

1/4 cup shallot

12 ounces cubed salmon

2 cups roughly chopped asparagus

1/2 cup grated Parmesan

1/4 cup chopped chives


Cook the pasta in heavily salted water then cook one minute less than the package directions. While the pasta cooks add the olive oil to a large skillet set over medium high heat. Sauté the shallot under tender and translucent, about 3 to 5 minutes.

Add the salmon and cook until opaque on the outside, about 2 minutes.

Stir in the asparagus and a heavy pinch or two of salt. Cook until the asparagus is just cooked through.

Carefully stir in the pasta with 1/3 cup pasta water. Stir in the Parmesan. Add more pasta water if needed.

Finish with chives then taste and adjust seasoning as needed.


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