Have you been seeing a lot of lemon recipes lately? I think we are all ready for warm weather and the bright, citrusy recipes that go with it. I know personally, I have made two different kinds of lemon bars in the last week! I hope you're into the lemon recipes too because I've got a great one for you today. Light and tender vermicelli is cooked in a creamy lemony sauce. This is a great side dish for all kinds of meals: roasted chicken, steak, anything on the grill, really. It's slightly adapted from RecipeGirl.
Baked Lemon Spaghetti
12 oz. vermicelli
⅓ cup butter
2 cloves garlic, grated
2 cups (16 oz.) light sour cream
1 tbsp finely grated lemon zest
⅓ cup lemon juice, about 1½ medium lemons
1 tsp Italian seasoning (I use Tuscan Sunset)
1 cup Parmesan cheese, grated, divided
Preheat oven to 400°.
Cook vermicelli according to package directions, minus a couple of minutes. You want it to be al dente. Drain vermicelli and place in a large bowl.
Melt butter in a medium skillet. Add garlic and cook until sizzling and lightly browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from heat; stir in sour cream, lemon zest, and lemon juice. Pour lemon sauce over the vermicelli and stir. Add Italian seasoning and ½ cup Parmesan and stir some more. Pour lemony spaghetti in a greased 1.5 quart casserole dish.
Cover dish with foil and bake for 20 minutes. Take dish out of the oven and remove foil. Sprinkle remaining ½ cup Parmesan on top. Place dish back into the oven for 7 or 8 minutes, just until cheese is melted and noodles have begun to turn golden in a few places. Serve immediately.
Makes 6 servings.
This is the perfect spring and summertime side dish. The lemon turns what can be a very heavy pasta dish into a light and refreshing side dish. While you can certainly use regular spaghetti, using vermicelli makes it nice and light too. And vermicelli cooks up really quickly, which is nice.
You can easily adjust the additional seasoning to your preference. The original recipe called for chopped parsley, but I'm not a fan so I used Italian seasoning. You could also use black pepper if you are a lemon pepper fan.
This dish could easily be turned into a main dish by adding some grilled chicken strips and fresh asparagus spears.
I'm hoping that by posting springy and summery recipes, I will be encouraging spring to get here already! It certainly is taking its sweet time here in Wisconsin!