There is no greater aphrodisiac than a warm bowl of pasta. These dishes are modern day love potions that will cast an unbreakable spell of passion on anyone you make them for, so proceed with caution (and love).
As the story goes, the irresistible peppery bite of arugula was forbidden in ancient Rome because it was used as a love potion. After making this dish, you’ll understand why.
🍝 1 pound pasta of choice
Kosher salt, measure with your heart and soul
🌱 2 cups loosely packed arugula
🌰 ¼ cup pine nuts, gently kissed in a hot pan to wake up their oils
🧄 1 garlic clove, peeled and sliced
½ cup light and feathery grated Parmigiano-reggiano
¼ cup freshly grated Pecorino-romano cheese
🍋 juice of one fragrant lemon
🕊️ ⅓ cup Extra virgin olive oil (you deserve the good stuff)
Bring a large pot of gorgeously salted water to a boil. Add your pasta and cook to al dente perfection, salty with a bite, just like you are. Drain the pasta but look after the tears of the gods like they are your first born.
In a blender combine arugula, a pinch of salt, pine nuts, garlic, Parmigiano-reggiano, Pecorino-romano and lemon juice. Process until the mixture turns into pure temptation and is silky smooth, just like you are.
Add the pesto to the al dente pasta along with a ladle or two of the tears of the gods. Massage the pesto and pasta water into the pasta until the mixture is creamy and just gorgeous. Serve with a sprinkle of toasted pine nuts and serve to your one true love.
When life gives you lemons, make lemon spaghetti. It’s impossible to resist the charm of this creamy yet tart number. A combination of fragrant lemon juice and zest marries with heavy cream, butter and garlic for a light, bright and vibrant pasta dish that will bring the sunshine of the Sorrento right into your kitchen.
Learn How to Make it Here.
As legend has it, Gnocchi di Sorrentina ( or as I like to call it, The Siren’s Enchantment) was created when a sailor from Sorrento returning from the Americas was serenaded by the beautiful sounds of a siren. In a state of blind love he dreamed up a pasta sauce made up of juicy tomatoes,aromatic extra virgin olive oil, zesty garlic and herbaceous basil. Once simmering he added pillows of heaven (aka gnocchi) and a generous sprinkling of grated mozzarella cheese and Parmigiano-reggiano and baked it as an offering of his true love. Try making my homemade gnocchi for your valentine; find my recipe here.
Like any good lover, this dish has an element of surprise that sets it apart from any other creamy pasta. A dusting of nutmeg and a whisper of mint fresh from the garden adds a flavor that will keep you coming back for more.
Watch me make it here.