Broccolini pairs very well with pasta. Whether it’s blended into a creamy sauce, ground into a pesto, or chopped up and tossed with pasta. Here it’s paired with anchovies and pecorino, whose high salt content seasons the broccoli and gives the sauce abundant flavor.
MAKES FOUR SERVINGS
Set a large pot of salted water to boil. Trim the bottom inch off the broccolini stalks, then chop the remaining stalks and florets into 1/2 - 1 inch pieces. Once the water has boiled, add the broccolini and boil for 90 seconds. Remove from the water using a slotted spoon and put directly in a bowl of ice water. Drain from the ice water and set aside.
Bring the pot of water back to a boil and add the Semolina Trumpets. Stir occasionally.
Heat olive oil in a large skillet over medium low heat. Add garlic and saute for about 1 minute, stirring constantly. Add Calabrian chile or red pepper flakes and saute for thirty seconds. Add anchovy filets. Stir and mash until filets have dissolved, then add broccolini and stir to coat with the garlic and chilis.
Turn off the heat and add the mascarpone, stirring until it’s nearly melted.
Once the pasta has cooked to al dente, reserve at least 1 cup pasta water before straining.
Add the cooked pasta to the skillet (still off the heat) along with the pecorino cheese and a splash of pasta water. Stir and toss to combine the pasta with the sauce until the cheese has melted. If the pecorino doesn’t melt into the sauce, place the skillet over very low heat, add a little more pasta water, and stir gently until the cheese has melted.
If desired, transfer to a serving dish and top with more pecorino or toasted breadcrumbs.
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Chefs Note: For those who don’t care for anchovies, there are numerous substitutes (olives, capers, etc.). However, the best substitute for this recipe is simply to add more pecorino or salt at the end of cooking. Calabrian chili peppers are sold in jars with oil (similar to sun-dried tomatoes) and can generally be found in specialty markets or online. If you use them, include the seeds in the recipe, as they are very mild peppers. If you can’t find jarred Calabrian peppers, red pepper flakes work well for this recipe.
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