Broccoli and Bacon Pasta with Ricotta
Active Time: 25 minutes | Total Time: 25 minutes | Serves 4 to 6
- 1 broccoli crown
- 6 strips bacon
- 1 clove garlic
- 1 pound orrechiete pasta
- ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
- ½ teaspoon kosher salt
- ¼ teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
- ¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- ¾ cup fresh ricotta cheese
- Extra virgin olive oil, for serving
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil.
Cut the broccoli into very small florets (you should get about 4 cups).
Slice the bacon crosswise into ½-in wide pieces. Finely chop the garlic.
In a large skillet, cook the bacon over medium heat until crisp, 5 to 6 minutes. Turn off the heat. Pour off almost all of the bacon fat and discard, leaving the bacon in the skillet. Add the garlic and stir while you let it cook in the residual heat of the skillet.
Add broccoli to the boiling water and cook until crisp-tender, about 1 minute. Using a strainer with a handle, lift out the broccoli, shake out excess water, and add to the bacon mixture. Stir to coat the broccoli in the bacon and garlic.
Use the strainer to remove any remaining broccoli bits from the water and discard. Once the water is boiling again, add the pasta and cook until al dente. Reserve ½ cup of the pasta water before you drain the pasta.
Grate the Parmesan while the pasta cooks.
Return the pasta to the pot. Place over low heat and add ¼ cup of the reserved pasta water. Add the broccoli-bacon mixture and stir. Add the Parmesan, salt, red pepper, and black pepper and stir until the Parmesan has melted. If the pasta is a little dry, add the remaining ¼ cup of pasta water.
Divide the pasta among bowls and add a dollop of ricotta. Sprinkle the tops with more Parmesan and drizzle with a little olive oil.
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