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Pasta with Ricotta, Basil & Lemon

What? Could it be? Is that the sun? Yes! And I really enjoyed the day too... especially as it is predicted to pour rain all day tomorrow.

So, just a quick little recipe for you all to try this weekend. Super easy and incredibly delicious. Use a low-fat ricotta and it is practically healthy. Enjoy:

A classic Italian dish, this recipe comes together quickly and requires only one pot (to wash), so it is also great in the RV. The walnuts are not traditional, but I really feel they make the dish special. Recipe is easily doubled.

½ pound dried pasta, such as penne or orecchiette (little ears)
1 cup ricotta 
¼ cup basil chiffonade, loosely packed
zest of one lemon
Salt & pepper to taste
about ¼ cup reserved water from cooking pasta
handful of toasted walnuts

Put a pot of salted water on to boil. While the water heats, toast the walnuts in a 300° oven for about five minutes, or until they are fragrant. Mix the ricotta, basil and lemon zest together in a small bowl. Season to taste with salt & pepper. Cook pasta, according to package directions, or until al dente. Scoop out about ¼ cup of the hot pasta cooking water and set it aside. When pasta is cooked, drain pasta (do not rinse) and leave the pasta in the colander to drain.

Return the empty pasta cooking pot to the stove on a very low heat. Add a few tablespoons of the pasta cooking water and then stir-in the ricotta mixture. Add more pasta water, if needed, until the sauce is creamy and warm. Pour the cooked pasta back into the cooking pot and toss well with the ricotta sauce to completely coat. Divide the pasta between two plates and garnish with the toasted walnuts.

Serves 2.

Until my next update, I remain, your basking correspondent.