Broccoli Linguine with Herbed Ricotta

Adapted loosely from Whole Grains for Busy People

In the interest of full disclosure, I will let you know that my husband took one bite and determined this dish to be “unbloggable.” So you are probably wondering why I bother? Well, I think people’s tastes vary. For example, my children really seemed to like this dish. You may be catching on to the fact that I cannot seem to please everyone all the time. Hrmpf. The simplicity of this dish is what makes it blogworthy to me. I’ve made some adjustments here that I’m hoping will enhance the flavors such that I don’t get a turned up nose next time this appears on the dinner table.

  • 2 large heads broccoli, cut into florets
  • 2 cups chicken or vegetable broth
  • 1 cup water
  • 8 oz. whole wheat spaghetti
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1-15 oz. container part-skim ricotta cheese
  • 1 cup oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes, well drained and chopped
  • 1/2 cup shredded Parmesan cheese, plus more for serving
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh rosemary
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • Black pepper
  • In a large skillet with high sides and a tight-fitting lid, bring a cup of generously salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli florets, cover and cook for about 3 minutes. Broccoli should be crisp-tender. Drain well and rinse under cold water. Set aside.
  • Fill the same pan with the broth and water. Bring to a boil, then add spaghetti, oregano, red pepper flakes and salt. Check the cooking time on the spaghetti package and cook uncovered for 3 minutes less than the recommended time for “al dente.” The liquid will begin to boil away just a bit, but that’s okay because you are going to use the liquid to create your sauce and you don’t want too much or it will be watery.
  • Add the ricotta and sun-dried tomatoes to the pan and stir gently for the last 3 minutes of cooking time. The sauce should begin to thicken. If it starts to become too dry, add a little more water or broth (just a few tablespoons at a time). Remove the pan from the heat and cover it for a few minutes to allow the pasta to become “al dente.”
  • Combine pasta mixture with the broccoli, then add the Parmesan, rosemary, lemon zest and pepper. Taste seasonings and add more salt or red pepper flakes if necessary. Serve with additional Parmesan.
  • Quick Tips
  • 1. You can make this dish with just about any pasta.
  • 2. Next time I make this (yes, sweetheart, I’m going to make this again…maybe I’ll do it when you are out of town right after I make salmon and tofu and anything containing pumpkin), I might try substituting some cauliflower for some of the broccoli for a little diversity.
  • 3. If you’d like to reduce the fat content in the recipe a little, try using nonfat ricotta cheese. I don’t think you’ll find a big difference in flavor. There are other adjustments you could make here to reduce fat, but this is the only one that will not significantly change the flavor of the recipe (I think). If you try this, let me know.

Preparation time: 10 minute(s)

Cooking time: 10 minute(s)

Number of servings (yield): 4

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