During this time of year as the number of activities and parties increase all tempting us with special foods to eat, I try to lighten up what I prepare for our everyday meals. My rational is that if we eat light but healthy meals at home then it’s OK to have some treats when we go out. I’m not sure how that all adds up, but it works for me.
The recipe I’m offering today is one that is very quick to make with just a few ingredients. It could stand alone with only the addition of a salad to make it a complete meal. Although the main ingredient is pasta it is kept light with a sauce that incorporates goat cheese for creaminess, and also includes spinach and lots of parsley. The addition of lemon jest and juice provides the brightness that makes the flavors pop.
LEMONY PASTA WITH GOAT CHEESE AND SPINACH
- 3/4 pound spaghetti
- 4 ounces fresh goat cheese
- 10 ounces baby spinach
- 2 cups fresh parsley, chopped
- 1 Tablespoon grated lemon zest
- 1 Tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- 1/4 cup walnuts, chopped and toasted
1. Bring a large pot of salted water to boiling. Add pasta and cook according package directions for al dente. Remove and save 2 cups of pasta cooking water. Drain the pasta.
2. In the pot, stir together 1 cup of pasta water and the goat cheese over medium heat to melt the cheese. Add pasta, spinach and parsley, lemon zest and lemon juice.
Stir to coat with the sauce. Add more pasta water as needed to create a sauce that coats the pasta. Season with salt and pepper. Sprinkle with walnuts to serve.