When we integrate vegetables into a dish, particularly a plate of pasta, they seem to become a seasoning--an accent to the noodles and often they get lost in the mix. Last evening we were cooking smoked pappardelle with brisket and sweet onions. The plan was to fold roasted asparagus into the pasta. Instead, as we gazed at the fat, juicy stalks of asparagus, we realized we would be able to highlight the vegetables and the noodles better individually. We peeled and roasted the asparagus in the oven so that they were tender and only lightly caramelized. We arranged them on a platter and served them beside the bowls of pasta. Everyone picked up the asparagus spears with their fingers and savored the juicy stalks. They were a refreshing interlude between bites of the meaty, smoky papparadelle. Each part of the meal was better because we enjoyed them both separately and together.