The kids rave about this pasta dish. They just love it. They like a lot of things, but this one is definitely in the top 5! As I previously shared with you (caroline), I let them chose the “pasta shape” they want, and I just assemble the meal around it.
I like this recipe because it is a nice alternative to tomato based sauces, for people who don’t like tomatoes or are looking for something different. It has no cream, it is light and you can taste the brightness of the lemon. My version includes capers and olives. but you can definitely skip these ingredients and stay with the basics.
This recipe is easy, healthy and extremely fast to make. By the time the pasta is cooked the sauce is ready. Assemble the dish and bon appétit
Rafaella’s Lemon Pasta
Credits: Rafaella Sargi
⅓ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
⅓ cup Lemon Juice
⅓ cup Parmesan Cheese, finely grated (+ more for serving)
¼ cup Fresh Basil, finely chopped
⅓ cup Olives, chopped
2 Tablespoon Capers
1 ½ teaspoon Lemon Zest
1 lb (450g) dried pasta of your choice (long or short)
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, until tender but still firm to the bite. (Use the information on the pasta package to give you an approximate time, but always verify!!).
Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk the olive oil, Parmesan cheese, lemon juice, 3⁄4 teaspoon of salt, 1⁄2 teaspoon of pepper to blend. Set the lemon sauce aside.
Drain* and immediately transfer the cooked pasta to the bowl with the lemon-oil sauce. Mix gently. Add the basil, lemon zest, olives and capers. Mix again until well combined. Taste and correct the seasoning. Do not add salt before tasting, because the capers, cheese and olives are already slaty. Remember, you can always add, but not the inverse. Transfer to bowls and serve with additional grated Parmesan cheese.
* At this point you can reserve one cup of the cooking liquid before draining. You can also add a little bit of this reserved cooking liquid to the sauce, if you feel the pasta dish is turning out to be too dry. This is a classical technique used to moisten pasta dishes without loosing flavor. I don’t think you need that in this specific recipe, but pasta texture varies between brands and cooking time. Keep that in mind for future recipes.