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Friday, April 15, 2011

Lemon pasta--sitruunapasta

This is a dish I found in a newspaper article about a decade ago, and it is probably my kids' favorite food ever.  Our chives just started growing again in the last week or so, so it is time to make this simple spring pasta dish.  I've found versions of this recipe on Finnish sites, also, but this came from an American newspaper.  You can add other fresh herbs such as basil if you like, and vary the amount of cheese if you like more or less.

First, put a big pot of water on to boil for the pasta.  You can use angel hair or regular spaghetti.  Last night for supper, I used whole grain spaghetti.

While waiting for the water to boil, wash a large lemon thoroughly and grate the zest.  After zesting the lemon, squeeze the juice.  It is nearly impossible to zest a lemon that has already been juiced!  In a large mixing bowl, put the following:

The zest and juice from one lemon
3 tablespoons of butter cut in small pieces
pepper to taste (we like fresh-ground for this recipe, or you could use lemon pepper for more zing)

about 1/4 cup of snipped chives or green onions (I've even used dried onions before with good results.  A chopped sweet onion could be substituted)

about 1/2 cup of Parmesan cheese

Boil the pasta (1 package = 1 pound or 1/2 kg) according to the package directions.  As soon as the pasta is done, drain it and immediately add it to the large bowl.  Stir thoroughly, melting the butter and cheese.  Serve with more Parmesan cheese and lemon pepper if you want.  This dish is also wonderful chilled in summer.

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