There’s a lovely little health food store near me that has wonderful, fresh, organic produce every day. I bought a beautiful head of broccoli and after a few days I was trying to figure out what to do with it.
Last week, I’d bought 1/2 a pound of Pancetta to use in Roasted Butternut Squash Risotto but I only used a little bit of it.
So, although I usually do broccoli with toasted pine nuts over pasta I thought, hmm, maybe add the pancetta, some garlic and Reggiano Parmesan, and a little chicken broth. Voila! A Kitchen Princess pasta original for your dining pleasure!
Pasta with Pancetta, Pine Nuts, Parmesan and Broccoli – Ingredients
- 1 head of organic broccoli
- 6 ounces of pancetta or bacon
- 4 tablespoons grapeseed oil
- 4 cloves garlic, chopped
- 1/4 cup pine nuts
- 1 cup freshly grated Parmigiano Reggiano, regular parmesan or romano cheese
- 1 cup chicken broth
- 1 box of penne pasta, cooked according to package directions
- 1 cup of pasta water from the cooked pasta
- 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
Pasta with Pancetta, Pine Nuts, Parmesan and Broccoli – Method
- Heat a skillet over medium heat and saute the pine nuts about 5 minutes or until they are beginning to brown.
- Trim the broccoli, peel the stems and chop into bite size pieces.
- Steam the broccoli in a steamer or boil for 5 minutes until crisp-tender.
- Dice the pancetta and saute in a large saute pan in the oil over medium high heat. Add the garlic.
- When the pancetta is beginning to get brown, remove from the pan.
- Add the broccoli to the pan and saute for a couple of minutes. Add the chicken broth and the crushed red pepper flakes.
- Let the broccoli cook in the chicken broth for a few minutes but don’t let it get mushy.
- Add the pasta to the broccoli and add the reserved cup of pasta water. Cook for a couple minutes so pasta can absorb some of the liquid.
- Add the reserved pancetta and garlic, the toasted pine nuts and the freshly grated parmesan cheese.
- You can use bacon in place of the pancetta. Even Italian sausage would be good.
- Please use freshly grated parmesan or romano cheese. Don’t use the shake can of cheese that doesn’t have to be refrigerated. Kitchen princesses use REAL cheese!