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Lemon and black pepper pasta with stracciatella cheese and artichokes

A scrumptious mix of melted cheese, sweet artichokes and lemony broad beans, this recipe is simple but impressive. Make it for vegetarian guests, or tuck in on meat-free Monday.

Serves: 4

Preparation time: 25 minutes

Cooking time: 35 minutes

Ingredients

3 artichokes
2 lemons
2 tablespoons (30ml) olive oil
1 bulb fennel
2 cloves of garlic
150g broad beans
250g fresh lemon and black pepper pasta
100g stracciatella
sea salt and pepper

Method

To prepare the artichokes, cut about 2cm off the tip of the stem and the top of each artichoke, take off outer leaves, peel the stem with a vegetable peeler and remove the choke (hair-like structure) in the middle of the base. To prevent the artichoke from going brown, rub with lemon, then leave to soak in water with a squeeze of lemon. Cook artichokes in salted boiling water for 10 to 15 minutes or until al dente and tender. When cooked, drain and refresh in cold water then halve lengthways. Place a pan over high heat and add a tablespoon of olive oil. Slice the fennel lengthways and add to the heated pan, along with sliced artichoke and slivers of garlic until fragrant and slightly browned. In a separate saucepan, blanch the broad beans in boiling water for a minute or two until electric green and crisp. Drain and refresh. Cook the pasta in rapidly boiling water for 5 to 8 minutes until al dente, drain and toss with remaining olive oil. Place pasta in a large bowl, top with artichoke and fennel and scatter over broad beans. Season to taste before stretching over the silky stracciatella. Serve immediately while hot.

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