Broccoli with Lemon Rigatoni. One more dish of pasta for your repertoire. I love this recipe.
As you know I love lemon and use it as often as I possibly can. On every vegetable, in lieu of vinegar for my salad, over chicken, and yes, with pasta too.
This creamy lemon broccoli pasta recipe, not only is deliciously creamy, the best part of this recipe is ready to be served at your table in less than 20 minutes. That to me is an added bonus.
Quick and easy this Italian pasta recipe will please the palate of everyone you serve it to.
Are excellent for your health as they contain vitamins and minerals. Also known for reducing inflammation and improving blood sugar. Broccoli also contains beta-carotene.
A green vegetable that comes into florets, which may resemble miniature trees.
You can either enjoy them raw with a dip, Yogurt Feta Sauce, or steamed. roasted with olive oil and seasoning. Make excellent soups. All in all a great vegetable to enjoy.
With this recipe, I used the stalk as well. Slice them to cook evenly.
Cooking the florets with the pasta at the end of the cooking process, will soften them and give extra flavor to the pasta.
Do cook the pasta al dente and drain it one minute prior to the package cooking instructions. Remember you will have to add them to the broccoli stalks and cream and that will finish the cooking process.
Make sure that the water is nicely salted while you cook your pasta.
Do save a cup of the cooking water. You may and may not use it, but if your pasta gets too dry, it will be of great use.
At cook time, have all your ingredients ready as this dish will be ready rather fast.
As you know when you mix lemon and heavy cream, the ladder has a tendency to break and lose the liquid creamy form. Add them both on the opposite sides of the pan, and at low heat. The low heat will allow them both to not have a heat shock. Stirring them together gently will ensure that the two combine beautifully and are creamy.
We are huge fans of rigatoni in my family, however, penne, paccheri, or any tubular store-bought pasta will work wonderfully with this recipe. You want the sauce to get in the inside of the pasta.
If you want to give it a kick, add some red pepper flakes to your sauce.
What is pasta al “dente”?
Al dente means to cook the pasta to the bite. Overcooked pasta turns into mush and it is neither fun to eat nor good.
In Italy, the pasta is always at “dente”, contrary to our American, or French standards. However, because of the sauces that accompany the pasta, the cooking process continues on thus making it perfect to enjoy once served.
Leftovers? How do I warm them up?
If you have some, no problem, warm the leftovers with a bit of water, a tablespoon of butter in a large skillet over the medium-low stove, and stir to make sure each rigatoni pasta is well warmed.
I do not have a microwave in the house, thus cannot give you those instructions. Just be careful not to burn yourself when taking them to eat.
How to serve this beautiful dish to your family and guests
Because you warm and combine the cooked pasta with the lemon cream sauce, use a pretty pan that can go from stovetop to table. Use a trivet, I made that mistake one time too many.
As you know in Italy there is a saying: You wait for pasta, pasta does not wait for you.
Make sure everyone is ready to sit at the table when you are ready to serve this dish. Pasta continues to cook even though is out of the cooking water, thus becoming overcooked the longer it has to wait to be enjoyed.
I like to serve my past on pasta dishes with loads of cheese over them.
Add a couple of small slices of lemon to each dish just to give it that fancy restaurant look.
Most importantly, do not forget to load it up with cheese. I use pecorino as it has a sharp edge to it and we all love it. Of course, Parmesan cheese is the perfect substitute for it.
If you enjoy this dish, check out these flavorful recipes:
Separate the stalks and the florets. Split in half the stalk and set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and add the pasta. Boil for 8 minutes or until very almost cooked through, then add the broccoli florets. Cook until the broccoli is tender, and the pasta is cooked. Reserve 1 cup of the boiling water and drain the pasta.
Meanwhile, in a large pan, melt butter and add the garlic and broccoli stems and cook for a few minutes over medium-high heat. . Pour the cream, lemon juice, and zest. Season to taste. Allow simmering for a few minutes until the sauce has thickened slightly.
Add the drained pasta and broccoli into the sauce and add a splash of the cooking water. Toss to coat in sauce, adding more pasta water if necessary.
Add a generous amount of grated cheese, toss, and serve.
Originally published on October 11, 2020. Updated on March 13, 2022