Whenever I have too little time and too few ingredients on hand — or when I’ve been eating too much meat — I cook up some broccoli pasta.
Which means I make it for dinner about once every 10 days. It’s delicious, healthy, inexpensive and easy to prepare.
Cold Weather Broccoli Pasta
Start to finish: 30 minutes
1 large head broccoli (about 1¼ to 1½ pounds)
2 tablespoons extra-
virgin olive oil
1 to 2 teaspoons red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 quart low-sodium chicken stock
½ pound whole-wheat capellini pasta
1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
Heat the oven to 450 F. Position one of the racks in the top third of the oven.
Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
Cut the broccoli, including the stems, into 2-inch pieces. Peel any thick stem pieces to remove the thick skin.
On a rimmed baking sheet, arrange the broccoli in a single layer. Drizzle with the oil, then sprinkle with salt to taste and toss well. Place on the top oven rack and roast for 8 to 10 minutes, or until the broccoli is crisp tender and slightly brown at the edges. Transfer the broccoli to a large skillet, add the pepper flakes and the chicken broth, then bring to a boil over medium-high heat.
When the water in the large pot comes to a boil, add a hefty pinch of salt and the pasta. Stir and cook for 2 minutes, or until the pasta is limp but not quite cooked through.
Drain the pasta and transfer it to the broccoli pan. Simmer for 2 minutes, or until the pasta is al dente. Stir in the Parmigiano-Reggiano and salt to taste.
Ladle into shallow soup bowls and serve with crusty bread.
Nutrition information per serving: 470 calories; 160 calories from fat (34 percent of total calories); 17 g fat (5 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 20 mg cholesterol; 54 g carbohydrate; 9 g fiber; 5 g sugar; 25 g protein; 870 mg sodium.