1poundshort cut pasta(like rigatoni, penne, or ziti)
1bunch leafy greens(like kale or spinach; about 8-10 ounces)
1lemon, zested and juiced
red chili flakes (optional)
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Cook pasta according to package instructions until just al dente. Save a cup of pasta water. Drain pasta and set aside.
Meanwhile, heat oil in a large saute pan over medium high heat. Add in leafy greens and cook until they start to wilt. Add in garlic and continue cooking for about a minute; set aside.
In a large bowl, whisk together the ricotta, parmesan, lemon zest and juice, salt, pepper, and ½ cup of pasta water. Add in the cooked pasta and leafy greens mixture. Toss until well combined and pasta is coated with sauce. Add more pasta water if needed to loosen up the pasta. Top with crushed red pepper if desired.
Be sure to save about a cup of pasta water before draining the pasta. You will need it to smooth out the sauce and loosen the pasta.
Ricotta cheese: for this recipe I recommend using whole milk ricotta cheese. However, part skim will work just fine in a pinch.
Leafy greens: use whatever leafy greens you have on hand, or omit them altogether. Here, I used a bag of kale, but you could use spinach (frozen works too!), collard greens, mustard greens, or arugula.
Pasta: tube-shaped pasta is my favorite to use with Lemon Ricotta Pasta. I like rigatoni, penne, or ziti. However, a long pasta, like spaghetti, works too.