The Splendid Table's Pasta with Two Broccolis and Raisin-Pine Nut Sauce

September 30, 2014

Author Notes: A pasta recipe we never thought would work, and a couple tricks for getting more out of your weeknight pasta routine. Recipe adapted from The Splendid Table's How to Eat Supper (Clarkson Potter, 2008).Genius Recipes

Serves: 4 as a main dish


For the sauce

  • Good-tasting extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium red onion, cut into 1/4-inch dice
  • Salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 2 ounces Genoa salami, sliced 1/4 inch thick and cut into 3/4-inch dice
  • 2 jalapeños, finely chopped (seeded if you want less heat)
  • 4 large garlic cloves, finely chopped
  • 1 heaping tablespoon tomato paste
  • 1 cup water
  • 1/3 cup raisins

For the pasta

  • 1 to 1 1/2 pounds broccoli
  • 1 large bunch (1 to 1 1/4 pounds) broccoli rabe
  • 1 pound cavatappi, rotini, or fusilli
  • 1/3 cup pine nuts, toasted
  • 1 to 1 1/2 cups shredded Stella Fontinella, Asiago, or young sheep cheese
In This Recipe


  1. Bring 8 quarts salted water to a boil in a 10-quart pot.
  2. Peel the broccoli stalks, and cut them into 1/4-inch-thick diagonal slices. Quarter the florets. Trim the broccoli rabe stems to within an inch of where the leaves begin. Pile up the stalks and slice them into 1/4-inch pieces.
  3. Generously film the bottom of a straight-sided 12-inch sauté pan with olive oil, and set it over high heat. Add the onion and generous sprinkles of salt and pepper. Sauté until the onion is golden brown, stirring often. Halfway through the sauté add the salami and jalapeños. Once the onions are browned, blend in the garlic and tomato paste. Cook for 1 minute.
  4. Stir in 1/2 cup of the water and boil it down to nothing as you use a wooden spatula to scrape up everything from the bottom of the pan. Repeat with the remaining 1/2 cup water. Once it is boiled off, stir in the raisins and pull the pan off the heat. Cover and set aside.
  5. Drop the pasta into the boiling water. Cook, stirring often, for 3 minutes. Stir in the two broccolis and boil until the pasta is just tender. Scoop 1/2 cup of the pasta water out of the pot and set it aside. Immediately drain the pasta and vegetables in a colander.
  6. Reheat the onion sauté over medium-high heat. Blend in the reserved pasta water, and add the pasta and vegetables and the pine nuts. Toss over the heat for 1 to 2 minutes, or until the pasta is lightly coated with the moistened sauté. Taste the pasta for seasoning. Turn it into a serving bowl. Pass the cheese separately.

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