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Long Fusilli with Potatoes and Haricots Verts in Lemon Sauce

Lemon, grated cheese, and cooking water make up the remarkably simple sauce for this pasta. Baby fingerling potatoes in different colors look great, but any small boiling potatoes will taste good -- just cut them into quarters if need be.

  • prep: 20 mins
    total time: 45 mins
  • servings: 8

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Ingredients

  • 1 pound mixed baby fingerling potatoes, such as red, gold, and purple, cut into 3/4-inch pieces
  • 10 ounces haricots verts, trimmed
  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 3 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1 pound long fusilli, cooked until al dente (1 1/2 cups cooking water reserved)
  • 2 cups finely grated Pecorino Romano cheese (4 ounces)
  • 1 lemon, zested into strips and sliced into matchsticks (2 tablespoons), and juiced
  • 1 cup torn fresh basil
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red-pepper flakes

Cook's Note

Follow these steps when you cook the pasta for this dish: Bring a large pot of water (6 quarts) to a boil -- you want enough water so the pasta can move around. Season the water with 1/4 cup coarse salt. (The water should be well seasoned; think "salty like the sea.") Cook 1 pound of pasta until al dente. Drain, reserving at least 2 cups cooking water. The pasta releases starch as it cooks, and the starchy water is essential to the sauce.

Directions

  1. Step 1

    Prepare an ice-water bath. Cook potatoes in a large pot of boiling water until tender, about 15 minutes. Transfer potatoes to a bowl using a slotted spoon; pat dry. Add haricots verts to boiling water. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes. Drain, and transfer to ice-water bath. Drain.

  2. Step 2

    Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Cook garlic until golden, about 3 minutes. Add potatoes and haricots verts; toss to coat. Add reserved cooking water, the cheese, and the lemon zest and juice. Simmer until cheese melts. Toss in pasta, basil, and red-pepper flakes.

Source
Martha Stewart Living, August 2011

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