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Macaroni Tonight: Bucatini With Limoncello Sauce

Growing up in an Italian household with a stay at home mom, dinners were simple and inexpensive.  Macaroni or pasta as kids today call it was a cheap and effortless way to feed your family. Throw in some meatballs, old chicken or left-over pork chops and you have a meal!  Wednesday was indeed Prince Spaghetti Day in my house.

Macaroni is such a wonderful thing.  Banished by so many health enthusiasts and waist watchers as a bad carb, macaroni in its simplest form is unbeatable. Please do not try and weenie out with wheat pasta or some other tragic, sad substitution. This little number is a wonderful and aromatic dish that takes under 30 minutes to prep and you look like a pro to your guests.

Bucatini with Limoncello Sauce

What you need:

One pound of macaroni. I love, love Bucatini.

1 lemon peeled (It will flavor the cream sauce.)

1 lemon zested

1-2 cloves of garlic

1 cup of heavy cream (OK, you can use light cream if it is making you crazy.)

¼ cup of Limoncello

Salt and fresh ground pepper to taste.

Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese shredded fresh. You can use Fontinella as well. It will make the sauce even creamier.

Basil leaves torn to garnish

Add-on’s:  If you need or crave some protein, add boiled shrimp or sautéed chicken at the point of mixing it all together.

What to do:

Place a large pot of water over high heat, throw in some salt and bring to a rolling boil.

Add the macaroni and cook to al dente, no exceptions, no softer. Drain and return the macaroni to the pot.

Meanwhile as the pasta is cooking, grab a medium sized pot and add the garlic, cream, Limoncello and lemon peel and watch it over medium-high heat, stirring now and then.

Once to a slight boil, reduce the heat and simmer until this beautiful sauce is thickened, maybe 10 minutes.

Take out the lemon peels and the garlic cloves from the sauce and throw them away. They have done their job.

Yum, now add the sauce and Parmigiano Reggiano to the big pot with the Bucatini.

Sprinkle the torn basil leaves and season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. If you are adding the optional protein, add it now.

Toss it all together. Serve with Prosecco and a crusty bread.  You can grill zucchini as a side dish.

Seems a little fancy for macaroni huh?

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