I love this lively lemon ricotta pasta with spinach, it makes a delish weeknight dinner prepared in under 15 minutes. Straightforward, new fixings, delectable flavor, and insignificant exertion.
This no-cook sauce is one of my go-to plans from when I was at uni and can be made in the blink of an eye. Blend smooth ricotta, parmesan cheddar, garlic, additional virgin olive oil, and reviving lemon. Your pasta sauce is prepared.
Simple peasy, affordable, ideal for your carb yearnings thus great.
In case you're a major fanatic of lemons like me, you'll love the amazing way their juice and pizzazz change a basic dish into something that preferences unadulterated daylight. Furthermore, shouldn't something be said about the velvety ricotta? I love it, particularly when I used to purchase new ricotta from the cheddar counter in Italy (ah ancient remnants of the past!)
To make this simple pasta dish more advantageous and all the more filling, remember to include your greens. You could trade spinach for different heavenly vegetables, or even protein like flame-broiled chicken or salmon. Anything is possible!
WHAT YOU NEED FOR THIS RECIPE
- 1 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil, plus extra for drizzling
- 1/2 lb (8oz/220 grams) pasta (spaghetti, linguine, penne, fusilli...)
- 1 garlic clove, grated or pressed
- 1 cup (9oz/250 grams) whole-milk ricotta
- 1 unwaxed lemon, zest and juice
- 8 oz (230 grams) fresh baby spinach, washed
- 1/3 cup (35 grams) grated Parmesan cheese, plus extra to serve
- 3 lemon wedges, to serve (optional)
- salt and black pepper, to taste
1. In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook pasta according to package directions until al dente. Meanwhile, make the ricotta sauce.
2. In a medium bowl, combine ricotta, olive oil, parmesan cheese, garlic, lemon zest and juice. Season with 1/4 tsp of salt and a good pinch of pepper.
3. Stir until well combined, taste and make sure you're happy with the seasoning.
4. In the last minute of the pasta's cooking time, add spinach to the pot. Stir well and push the leaves down to submerge them in water.
5. After 1 minute, reserve 1/2 cup of the cooking water, then drain.
6. Return pasta and spinach to the same pot, add the ricotta sauce and part of the reserved cooking water. Stir well to evenly coat the pasta in the sauce, add more cooking water as needed, you want a smooth and creamy texture.
7. Serve immediately and garnish with grated or shaved Parmesan cheese, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and lemon wedges if desired (for extra freshly squeezed juice, but I leave it optional). Plus, I love adding a good pinch of red pepper flakes, you might give it a go. Enjoy!
Cooking water: add pasta water gradually, you might not need all of it. You don't want to water down the flavor, but only make spaghetti nice and moist. If you think the reserved water is not enough, you might add a few Tbsps of milk.
Pasta: you can use any short, large or long pasta shapes that work well to capture the creamy ricotta. I love spaghetti, but penne, fusilli, conchiglie work fine. Mini pasta shapes like orzo or even elbow macaroni don’t work well in the recipe.
HOW TO ADD SPINACH TO PASTA?
Whitened (immediately bubbled) spinach works fine in this formula, and cooking spinach and pasta across the board pot spare time and cleaning up. Nonetheless, make a point not to overcook it, which will bring about the loss of supplements, flavor, and green shading.
What about adding a twist? This terrific recipe is so versatile, feel free to add more vegetables or even protein of your choice. Here are a few variations that taste delicious along with the lemon and ricotta combo.
Add them to the pot when you stir in the ricotta mixture.
§ Sauteed or grilled vegetables: asparagus, peas, zucchini, artichokes
§ Arugula, basil, chives
§ Cherry tomatoes or chopped sun dried tomatoes
§ Grilled chicken
§ Grilled or smoked salmon