Roasted Tomatoes and Broccolette on a Bed of Pasta
END OF SUMMER BEAUTY HOOKS UP WITH EARLY FALL HUNK
Even though we are closing the door on a bright and intense Summer bounty, we welcome the abundance of early Fall produce. The combination of the rich flavored tomatoes and the newly harvested broccolette are blended harmoniously in this dish.
This one is sweet and simple! The hearty yet crunchy broccolette and the juicy sweet tomatoes, scorched in the oven for less than 20 minutes – simply seasoned only with olive oil, salt and pepper. You will appreciate their incredible flavor that comes out from such a deceptively simple cooking process! It humbles me to understand how nature can provide the most divine nuance and array of groceries through various seasons.
I like broccoli, but broccolette (or broccolini) I love love love! It sure tastes like broccoli, except not as strong. Its stems are more slender and tender and it’s definitely less clustered. Broccolette is great steamed and stir-fried; however lately (after discovering that it holds up so well on the grill), I think roasting it until slightly charred is my favorite method.
Using mini heirloom tomatoes that come in different shapes, sizes and colors sure give this dish an added bonus: prettiness. If you can’t find any heirloom tomatoes use cherry tomatoes. They’re good and sweet, and multi colored too!
You have the liberty to make this dish spicy, which adds more flavor in my opinion, or you can simply leave the palate pleasing vegetables with their natural taste. Be generous on the Italian parsley. The subtle injection of freshness and brightness it contributes sure gives extra happiness on your plate. Top it off with feta cheese, and you will forget all about adding some serious protein (aka meat.) A fuller-bodied pasta will hold this generous portion of vegetables really well.
Friends, this is a good way to welcome the cooler season. Hello Fall, care to stay awhile?
- 2 pounds Broccolette
- 2 garlic clove, minced
- ¼ cup plus 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Sea salt and ground black pepper, to season
- 2 pounds mini heirloom tomatoes
- 1 bunch scallions, white and green parts, cut into 1-inch lengths
- 1 pound pasta of your choice
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Large pinch of crushed red pepper
- ½ cup chopped flat leaf parsley
- ½ cup feta, for garnish
- Preheat the oven to 425°.
- In a medium bowl, toss the Broccolette and garlic with ¼ cup of the olive oil and season with salt and pepper; spread evenly on a rimmed baking sheet.
- On another rimmed baking sheet spread the tomatoes with the remaining 2 tablespoons of olive oil, season with salt and pepper. Roast the vegetables for about 25-30 minutes.
- Meanwhile, in a large pot of salted boiling water, cook the scallions until just softened, for about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the scallions to a plate lined with a kitchen towel.
- Put the pasta into the boiling water and cook according to its package instruction (or to al dente.)
- Make sure you reserve ¼ cup of the pasta cooking water prior to completely draining it.
- Return the pasta to the pot. Add the roasted Broccolette, scallions, butter, crushed red pepper and half of the parsley. Add the reserved pasta water. Gently fold in the roasted tomatoes, and taste (if you need to add more salt and pepper.)
- Top with cheese and the remaining parsley and serve.