Spaghetti Rigatti with Broccoli-Pine Nut Pesto


broccoli pesto
Originally uploaded by doyd74

I got this recipe from a magazine but I changed it a little bit. I wanted to create a pasta dish that will be light, refreshing, delicious and healthy for my husband and daughter. I think I did the right thing because they both loved it!

When I read or watch about new recipes elsewhere, I try to make it my own by using local ingredients from my “pantry.” Most of the time I am lucky with the result but there are times I learn and realize that not all similar looking ingredients go well with others.

Here’s how to make one for yourself:

1/3 cup roasted pine nuts
1/2 pound broccoli cut into florets
3 garlic cloves (i added more because i love the garlicky smell)
1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
Pinch of crushed red pepper
1/3 cup grated pecorino or parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
salt and pepper
spaghetti rigatti

Roast the pine nuts on an ungreased non-stick pan until fragrant and lightly brown; let cool.

In a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the broccoli until tender and bright green. Drain well and wash with cool running water. Drain and squeeze out the excess water (I personally use a salad spinner for this!).

In a food processor, add the garlic, 1/3 cup of roasted pine nuts; pulse until coarsely chopped. Add the broccoli, olive oil and crushed pepper and process until everything is finely chopped. Add the cheese and pulse until combined. Season with salt and pepper. Put the pesto in a large bowl.

Cook your pasta until al dente and reserve a few tablespoons of pasta cooking water. Add the spaghetti rigatti to the pesto sauce, then stir in the reserved cooking water and toss until the pasta is well coated with the pesto sauce. Sprinkle with some more roasted pine nuts and some freshly grated parmesan cheese.

Kids will love this! Let them top their own plate with the nuts and cheese to make it fun!

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