Fusilli with Spinach and Preserved Lemon
In the springtime, we preserve lemons (see our recipe). In the summertime, we use our jars of brined lemons to add bright tart-lemon flavors to some of our favorite dishes. While this pasta may seem pretty simple, the contrast from the red pepper flake spice with the brightness from the lemon creates a perfect marriage to this simple dish. We found this recipe from Bon Appetit and adapted it slightly.
8 tbsp unsalted butter, divided
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2+ tsp crushed red pepper flakes, divided
1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
12 oz. fresh or dried Fusilli, or other pasta
2 bunches flat-leaf spinach (about 8 cups), divided
1+ tbsp fresh lemon juice
1+ tbsp thinly sliced preserved lemon peel
2 tbsp olive oil
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Step 1: Heat oil and 2 tbsp butter in large skillet over medium heat until butter is bubbling. Add garlic and half of the red pepper flakes and saute for about 1 minute. Add panko and stir for about 2 minutes, until golden brown. Add the lemon zest and transfer panko to plate lined with paper towel to absorb the grease. Add salt and pepper and set aside. and wipe out skillet.
Step 2: Boil the pasta in salted water (stir a few times), until al dente; drain.
Step 3: Wipe out the skillet and while pasta is boiling, heat remaining butter (6 tbsp) over medium heat. Cook for about 3 minutes and swirl the skillet until butter is brown. Add 1 bunch of the spinach and cook for about 1 minute until wilted.
Step 4: Add pasta to skillet; toss to coat pasta with wilted spinach. Add lemon juice, preserved lemon peel, and remaining 1/4 tsp red pepper flakes and season with salt, pepper. If desired, add more lemon juice and preserved lemon peel. Add the remaining spinach and toss for about 1 minute, until slightly wilted.
Step 5: Top with reserved panko and serve.
original recipe source: https://www.bonappetit.com/recipe/strozzapreti-with-spinach-and-preserved-lemon
Photo credit: Courtney DeGraff