Friday, January 6, 2017

Easy Elegance - Spaghettini al Limone

There are several Lemon-driven recipes here on Neurotic Kitchen (find them HERE, HERE and HERE) and the reason for that is simple: I love the stuff. Today's incredibly simple but elegant meal will delight your palate and is a worthy choice for dinner parties, date nights, or any time you want to treat yourself. 

As a bonus, its low-cost ingredients will keep you within your New Year's budget, but the austerity stops there; a sinful amount of Butter makes this not all that diet-friendly, but, incredibly, the finished dish manages to feel so light and refreshing that it is perfect for a first course to get your tastebuds ready for more. Once the Pasta is cooked, this dish comes together in just 5 minutes, so with your mis en place ready to go, you can make it with guests on hand and only be gone from the party very briefly.
Spaghettini al Limone, Photo: NK 

Spaghettini al Limone
Serves 6 as a light appetizer, 4 as a heartier appetizer
Very lightly adapted from Maria Batali

6 Tablespoons Salted Butter 
Pound Spaghettini or other thin long pasta
2 Tablespoons Salt 
1/4 Cup Lemon Zest (from about 4 lemons)
2 Tablespoons Lemon Juice
1/2 Cup Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese 
3 Tablespoons finely chopped Chives 
Extra Salt and Ground Pepper 


Boil a large pot of water with 2 Tablespoons of Salt in it. 

Meanwhile, in a very large saute pan, add the Butter and Lemon Zest and heat over moderate heat, stirring. 

Once water is boiling, add the Pasta and cook until just al dente. Reserve 1/4 cup Pasta Water and drain the pasta. 

Add drained Pasta to the saute pan. Toss Lemon Juice onto it. Toss to coat with Lemon Zest and Butter Mixture and loosen with a tablespoon or two of pasta water, tossing continuously over medium heat for about a minute until thickened. 

Turn off flame and sprinkle on Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese. Taste for Salt and add more if needed. Season liberally with Black Pepper. Divide Pasta among plates and sprinkle with chopped Chives. Serve with extra Parmigiano Reggiano Cheese. 


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