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Sorrento Sunshine Awaits
In Every Dish of Spaghetti al Limoncello

Spaghetti al Limoncello

I make this recipe and I'm once again in Sorrento, on the Amalfi Coast. I can feel that gentle breeze in the air, a breeze fragrant with the scent of the sea, jasmine and lemons.  I close my eyes and a crystal clear, impossibly blue, Italian sea is once again stretching before me. 

They say that smell and taste are the best way to bring back memories and this dish is the proof. 

Thank you to zia Amalia for sharing your secret recipe with us. How we enjoyed the many times we've sat around your huge outdoor table under the grapevines, friends and family laughing, joking and smiling.

All of us happy to be together and joyous at the thought of the dishes that will be coming out of zia Amalia's kitchen.

Spaghetti al Limoncello is always one of the highlights and one of my all time favorite Italian spaghetti recipe.

Ingredients (serves 4)

  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 and a 1/2 tins (600g/21.16oz in total)  of chopped Italian tomatoes 
  • ½ tin (35g/1.23 oz) of tomato paste
  • 1/4 glass of limoncello (70 ml)
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • 1 large onion
  • 1 chilli pepper
  • fresh parsley (½ cup)
  • pepper
  • salt
  • a handful of ground pistachio nuts
  • 1 pound (450g) spaghetti
  • 10 clams (I occasionally leave out the clams and replace with other seafood) 
  • 25 mussels
  • 8 medium size prawns
  • small squid chopped – about 250 g/half a pound
  • one lemon

Instructions

  • Finely chop the onions and mince the garlic.
  • Heat the oil and add in the onions until they are transparent.
  • Drop in the garlic.
  • After three minutes throw in the clam shells and cook until they open.
  • Once they open add in the limoncello and cook until the liquid begins to evaporate. 
  • Next put in the chopped tomato and tomato paste, pistachio nuts and half the parsley. 
  • Add chilli pepper, mussels, squid and a little salt and pepper to taste,
  • Cook for five more minutes.
  • Add in the prawns and bring to the boil.
  • Reduce heat and simmer for 35 minutes while you cook the spaghetti.
  • Cook the spaghetti, with a tablespoon of coarse salt added to the water, until al dente.
  • Drain the spaghetti, place in a big bowl and mix with the sauce. 
  • Remember to add a little more parsley and a squeeze of fresh lemon to each serving.

Buon appetito!

And remember...

Lemons in Italy

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