This is a great dish to make for a summertime dinner. It’s easy to make, and the ingredients are really easy to find. I love the way the tomatoes really neutralize the flavor of lemon, also pairing well with the arugula.
Lemon Fusilli with Arugula ingredients:
1 tablespoon good olive oil
1 tablespoon mined garlic (2 cloves)
kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
1 pound dried fusilli pasta
1/2 pound baby arugula (or 2 bunches of regular aruglula stems removed and leaves cut into thirds)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
1 pint grape or cherry tomatoes, halved
Heat the olive oil in a medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the garlic, and cook for 60 seconds, then add the cream, the zest and juice of 2 of the lemons, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 teaspoon pepper. Bring to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for 15 to 20 minutes, until it starts to thicken.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil, add 1 tablespoon salt and the pasta, and cook al dente according to the directions on the package, about 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Drain the pasta and return it to the pot. Immediately add the cream mixture and cook over medium-low heat for 3 minutes, until pasta has absorbed most of the sauce. Pour the hot pasta into a large bowl and add the arugula, Parmesan and tomatoes. Cut the last lemon in half lengthwise, slice it 1/4 inch thick crosswise, and add a few slices to the pasta. Toss well, season to taste and serve hot.
Considering I love garlic and cheese, I also might might have added one or two more cloves of garlic and about a 1/2 cup more of parmesan cheese. I think it would have helped tone down the strong lemon flavor.
I also enjoyed the kosher salt, which I had never used before. It definitely has a lot more flavor than the regular table salt I use in cooking, and the pepper gave a nice bite to the sauce. Arugula is another ingredient I have never used before, but after wilting nicely into the pasta it gave the dish great color and a nice fresh herb taste.
Overall on a scale from one to ten I would probably give this recipe a seven. On the difficulty scale I would rate it as easy. If you want a quick, light pasta dish, this is a great choice.
This recipe is featured from Barefoot Contessa: At Home by Ina Garten.