1/2 pound gemelli, or other similar shaped pasta, such as fusilli, rotini, or cavatelli3 ounces mascarpone cheese zest and juice of 1/2 lemon 1/8 teaspoon salt 1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper 1 to 2 tablespoons hot pasta water 3 packed cups arugula 3 to 4 tablespoons grated Reggiano-Parmigiano or Grana Padano cheese 1/8 teaspoon of red pepper flakes extra virgin olive oil for drizzling (optional)
In a large pot, cook pasta in salted boiling water according to directions, until al dente.
Meanwhile, in a small bowl, whisk mascarpone cheese, lemon zest, lemon juice, salt, black pepper and hot pasta water until smooth and creamy.
Drain pasta and return to pot. Add arugula and toss. Add the cheese sauce and toss until well coated. Divide among plates. Sprinkle with grated cheese, red pepper flakes and, if desired, a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Serve immediately.