Tuesday, 29 July 2014

Spaghetti with Gorgonzola, Caramelized Garlic & Lemon

I discovered this little gourmet deli near my house in Rome -- ok, all delis are essentially gourmet in Italy, but this is like extra gourmet with truffled anchovies and gold speckled mozzarella and stuff.  The owner was...enthusiastic.  Ten minutes in that tiny store and he'd used the word "fantastic" and its synonyms 50 times.  The tuna's superb, the parmesan's extraordinary, the salami's marvelous.  Everything in the store is just fab.  Just fantastic.   What an obnoxious little man.  But anyway, I felt awkward not buying anything at the end (I'm just the perfect customer) and so out of all the fantastic products, I decided to try some champagne gorgonzola.
It was pretty good. But I don't even know why I opted for that because gorgonzola's not even one of my favorite cheeses.  I was under pressure.  It was good and I really enjoyed it with bread this morning, but then I decided to make a pasta out of it. 

The lemon cuts through the fat and adds some freshness to the dish because often such cheese-based pastas can be quite heavy.  Lemon zest or perhaps some fresh herbs or even fresh cherry tomatoes would do well.   Oh oh oh or some sweet caramelized onions.  That would be nice. 
Serves 1
80g spaghetti
1 small clove of garlic, thinly sliced
40g gorgonzola, cut into cubes
20g parmesan, grated
1 lemon, zest and the tiniest bit of juice
Extra virgin olive oil
Black Pepper

Heat a bit of olive oil in a pan and add the sliced garlic.  When golden, turn the heat down to low and let it cook for a few minutes.

Meanwhile, bring a large pot of salted water to the boil and add the spaghetti.  When the pasta is cooked (you want it a bit more al dente then you'd normally like it as it will still cook later) and reserve a bit of the pasta water. 

Put the pasta in the pan with the garlic and mix in half the gorgonzola and parmesan.  Add a bit of the pasta water (like 1tbsp) and mix in the remaining cheese.  If the pasta seems dry then add a bit more of the pasta water to help melt the cheese also.  Add the lemon zest, a tiny bit of lemon juice and season.  Add lots of black pepper and drizzle with some olive oil before serving.

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