Tuesday, 15 May 2012

Pulling another Bunny from a Hat

Linguine Estive con Limone, Ricotta Fresca & Erbe Miste
Summer Linguini with Lemon, Fresh Ricotta and Herbs

Yes indeed, even on the night before I leave on vacation- I put together an admittedly simple, but nevertheless tasty plate of pasta for you all. Well, actually, it was for ME as it was my supper... but I digress! I really pushed myself to the limits this time- but yes- I have managed to really empty my fridge and the last few remnants from it went to make up this meal. Half a carrot, a Spring onion, assorted herbs and 2 scoops of cream cheese! Oh- and my last lemon! That's how little you sometimes need to create a lot of happiness at suppertime!

I know I always make out that my dishes are really quick and easy to make... but people- this dish was really quick and easy to make! It literally took 10 minutes! 7 minutes for the pasta to cook and 3 minutes to transform it into this lemony, minty, nutmeg and lemon-infused, herb and ricotta delight! Sounds like quite a lot, considering so little is in there, doesn't it?

First of all I sliced a little lemon peel very thinly, taking only the yellow peel and avoiding the white pith and then copped it as finely as possible. In a small saucepan, I began to cook the linguini, in boiling, salted water as usual.

Whilst the pasta was on the boil, I diced half of a carrot as finely as I could, sliced the Spring onion thinly and chopped both a handful of mint and parsley as well as a little bunch of tender fresh thyme very finely too. Phew! That was my prep-work out of the way!
After the pasta had boiled for 5 minutes, I added the carrots to it so that they would briefly be blanched in the remaining 2 minutes that the pasta would be cooking.

At the same time, I began to fry the sliced Spring onion, with a little crushed garlic and the 
mixed herbs and zest in just a tablespoonful of olive oil... and within a minute or so, it began to smell pretty wonderful! I cranked-up the heat on the frying pan, drained the pasta, although not too thoroughly and added it to the onion, herbs and zest in the frying pan.

I tossed it and stirred it thoroughly with a pair of tongues, being careful to pick up all of the finely chopped ingredients. I let it continue cooking it for a minute or so, then removed it from the heat, added 2 tablespoons of ricotta cheese and seasoned it generously with freshly grated nutmeg and freshly ground black pepper. I made sure to keep it off the heat so the cheese didn't curdle, but much rather created a nice creamy coating on the linguini to counterpoint the lemon and herb, garlic flavor.

A tiny squeeze of lemon, an extra drizzle of olive oil and a few drops of green Tabasco- and a small miracle happened on my dinner plate! And it could happen on yours too if you wanted it to!


  1. This looks really delicious! And pretty, too. I've got all the ingredients at home, so I may just try this soon..

    1. Glad you like it Frank! It was made in near-desperation on my last day before leaving for the States... but it was pretty-darned tasty! Hope you enjoy it too! Best Wishes- Francesco