How to make pasta with broccoli, pistachios, capers, and anchovies

After a lot of big Christmas meals over the last few days, we were happy to eat an easy veggie pasta last night. This warm winter dish brings a hot and spicy heat to boring old broccoli. We ate ours with a hazelnut pappardelle, but most dry pasta will work.

The flavors in this pasta may seem unusual, but they are very Sicilian, an island known for its broccoli, pistachios, capers, and anchovies. You could toss in some pitted black olives too.

We paired ours with a light, acidic red wine made from the Sicilian Frappato grape. Frappato is more famous as a blending grape with Nero d’Avola in the Cerasuolo di Vittoria DOC, but on its own, it can produce a tasty wine that is fruity and floral and best drunk young.

Pasta with broccoli, pistachios, capers, and anchovies,

Serves 2

  • 1 head of broccoli, cut into bite-sized pieces
  • 1/8 of a cup (20 grams) of unsalted pistachios, shelled
  • 1 tablespoon of salt-packed capers, rinsed
  • 2 oil-packed anchovy fillets
  • 1 clove garlic
  • A pinch of red pepper flakes
  • Salt
  • Olive oil
  • Parmesan or pecorino cheese, grated
  • 200-250 grams pasta
  1. Bring a large pot of water to boil and add a handful of coarse salt.
  2. Cook the broccoli in the boiling water until tender. Remove with a slotted spoon and save the water to cook the pasta.
  3. Meanwhile, mince the pistachios, capers, anchovies, and garlic together.
  4. Cook the pistachio mixture with the red pepper flakes in a couple of tablespoons of olive oil in a skillet over medium heat until the garlic is golden.
  5. Place the broccoli in the skillet with the garlic mixture and toss and cook over low heat for a couple of minutes.
  6. Meanwhile, cook the pasta.
  7. Drain the pasta and add to the skillet with the broccoli and toss.
  8. Continue to cook over medium-high heat for about 30 seconds while tossing.
  9. Plate and top with cheese and serve.

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