lemon ricotta pasta w/ sausage and fried leeks
creamy ricotta, bright lemon, and rich sausage come together in a thirty minute meal that's perfect for a summer evening. thinly sliced, crispy fried leeks elevate the dish with a touch of refined flair. this is actually one of the first recipes i developed! (photo credit to my wonderful uncle!) __
creamy lemon pasta with sausage + leeks
eight oz. italian sausage, casings removed (vegan options below)
eight oz. rigatoni or pasta of choice
one cup ricotta cheese (see notes)
juice + zest from half a lemon
two tsp salt
one tsp black pepper
one leek, light and white parts only, thinly sliced
1. Boil two quarts of water along with a tablespoon of kosher salt in a pot. Add the pasta and cook to package directions. Drain, reserving a half cup of pasta water.
2. Meanwhile, divide the sausage meat into sixteen small meatballs and cook in a sauté pan, stirring, over medium heat until browned and cooked nearly through, about five to eight minutes.
3. In a medium bowl, stir together ricotta, lemon, salt and pepper. Add the reserved water and pour sauce into sauté pan, along with the pasta. Stir together over low heat.
4. Heat a cup of oil in a small skillet over medium high heat and add the leeks. Fry for two to three minutes, until just starting to brown. Serve pasta and top with leeks.
For plant based: replace sausage with pressed and grated tofu seasoned to taste with salt, pepper and garlic powder. replace ricotta with cashew yogurt and halve the lemon juice.
On riccota cheese: look for good quality ricotta cheese with no gums or stabilizers. Stop & Shop's brand is actually pretty decent and widely available.
Just daydreaming of leeks 😁Leeks are great for heart health. They contain a healthy amount of kaempferol, a flavonoid. Which has been shown to protect your blood vessels from damage. It also has high amounts of antioxidant polyphenols that also aid in protection of blood vessels and blood cells from oxidative damage. Leeks are prebiotics, meaning they are food for your bacteria that live in your digestive tract. Which is great because you need your bacteria in your gut to be healthy and happy in order for you to be healthy and happy. Fun fact about leeks-they are part of the same family that onion and garlic are in, allium.
Have you ever tried leeks? If so what is your favorite way to prepare it? I usually add it in my homemade sauerkraut. 😊