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Rotelli with Meyer Lemon and Quail Eggs

a quick and easy but elegant dinner u
a quick and easy but elegant dinner u
Stephen Roberts 2014

Meyer lemons can still be found if you know where to look. If you're looking for a relatively easy but still rich and flavorful dish that uses the last of the season's bounty, one option you might consider is a pasta dish. The lemons add a rather delicate flavor that pairs well with the salty cheeses you would add to pasta. Add some already rich fried quail eggs and you elevate the dish to something a little more elegant. You just don't need to tell anyone that it's actually quite easy and satisfying.

We got ours directly from a tree and were quite grateful for them. Quail eggs can be found in many high end groceries but the ones we used here were purchased at Berkeley Bowl(

Grate your own cheese too. This is not a dish to use "shakey" cheese on.

8 oz dried rotelli
Juice and zest of one large meyer lemon
4 quail eggs
1 tbsp butter
1 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese plus more to your taste

  1. Cook rotelli in boiling water
  2. When the pasta is al dente, transfer to a bowl. Reserve the pasta water.
  3. Toss with the lemon zest and juice. Loosen the sauce with pasta water and add 1 cup of the cheese.
  4. Season with salt and pepper.
  5. Portion pasta into 4 bowls.
  6. Heat a small sautee pan and melt the butter in it.
  7. Quickly crack and fry the quail eggs. Once the whites have set, top each bowl of pasta with an egg.
  8. Garnish with more cheese, cracked black pepper and serve.
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