The first Meatless Monday

We have such a variety of fine meat and seafood available to us in the supermarkets now that it is easy to forget about vegetables and only have them as a side dish ‘because we think we should'. A meat-free meal now and then can save money, has real health benefits and can be so quick and simple to make. Over the next few weeks our ‘Meatless Mondays’ will provide ideas and inspiration for refreshing summer dishes that are easy to make at home, as well as discovering some of the best vegetarian restaurants around.

Lemon Pappadelle (serves 4)

450g (1lb) dry pappadelle
6tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 clove of finely chopped garlic
Zest of one lemon
Juice of one lemon
Small bunch of parsley
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
4tbsp grated cashew nuts (or freshly grated Parmesan cheese for any non-vegetarians!)

Cook the pasta according to the label until al dente. Reserve 3tbsp cooking liquid; drain. Meanwhile, heat 2tbsp oil in a large pan over a medium heat. Reduce the heat to low, add the garlic, and cook, stirring frequently, until golden brown and fragrant (3-4 minutes). Stir in the pepper, lemon juice and most of the lemon zest. Cook for 3-4 minutes, stirring often. Add the pasta and cooking liquid to the skillet with the salt and remaining 1tbsp oil. Toss until well mixed. Top with the cheese or grated nuts and serve, finishing each dish with a sprinkle of parsley and the remaining lemon zest.