Fresh Tagliatelle With Lemon, Hazelnuts & Brown Butter
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- 1/3 cup hazelnuts
- 1 pound fresh tagliatelle
- 2 cups reserved pasta water
- 9 tablespoons butter, cut into 1-inch cubes, divided
- zest of 1 lemon, finely grated
- a squeeze of lemon juice
- 2 sprigs thyme
- freshly ground black pepper
- 1 ounce grated pecorino
- 4 dollops of fresh ricotta (about 6 tablespoons total)
- salt, to taste
Adapted from wsj.com
Set a large pot of salted water over high heat and bring to a boil. Meanwhile, in a large sauté pan over medium-high heat, toast hazelnuts, shaking pan often, until aromatic, about 2 minutes. Transfer nuts to a kitchen towel. Wrap nuts in towel and rub until skins flake off. Roughly chop nuts and set aside.
Wipe sauté pan clean and set over medium heat. Add tagliatelle to boiling water and cook until noodles start to whiten and are just shy of al dente. Strain pasta, reserving pasta water. Add 1 cup reserved pasta water, pasta and 6 tablespoons butter, to sauté pan. Toss until butter melts and emulsifies with water, about 30 seconds. Add lemon zest, lemon juice, hazelnuts, thyme, pepper and pecorino. Cook, tossing, until lemon aroma intensifies and cheese melts, 1 minute. Adjust seasoning and add splashes of reserved pasta water as needed to stretch sauce until it coats all the pasta.
Meanwhile, in a separate small pan, melt remaining butter over medium-high heat until it smells nutty and turns golden brown, about 1 minute.
To serve, distribute pasta among four plates and top with dollops of fresh ricotta. Season lightly with salt, then drizzle with browned butter. Serve immediately.