I have written about romanesco here (almost to the day!) and since it is back in season, I am cooking with it again. I wanted to find a new way to eat it besides roasting. So turning to my trusty Food Blog Search I came across this recipe on a food blog written by the son of Marcella Hazan, the queen of Italian Cookbooks in America. Apparently he just began writing it late last year, and while this looked too simple to be true, it followed the adage that the Italians know how to make magic with only a few ingredients.
Boil or steam Romanesco, saute it with a little garlic and some red pepper flakes and toss it with fusilli and some parmesan cheese and presto, magic in your mouth! Guiliano used pecorino cheese and he called it broccoflower, but from the picture it was clear that he was talking about my own true love, romanesco.
The romanesco that I had was really small, only about 2 cups once it was broken up, and that was enough for 1/2 a lb of pasta. But you will want to double it because this is so amazingly good! This is a super quick meal that just needs a salad to round it all out.
I will be sending this over to Beth Anne at The Seventh Level of Boredom for Presto Pasta Nights. If you want to join send an entry to bethanneleach (at) gmail (dot) com and cc ruth (at) 4everykitchen (dot) com and check back on Friday 2/25 for the full round up.
Fusilli with Romanesco
from the Educated Palate
1 medium clove garlic
4 tablespoons medium aged pecorino cheese (or parmesan)
1/2 pound fusilli
1/2 teaspoon of hot red pepper flakes
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Fill a pot for the pasta with about 6 quarts of water, place over high heat, and bring to a boil. Remove the leaves around the romanesco and cut off the root. Peel and finely chop the garlic. Grate the pecorino cheese. When the water comes to a boil, add 2 tablespoons salt and add the romanesco . Cook until tender, 10-12 minutes, then remove it from the boiling water and transfer to a cutting board. Keep the pot of boiling water over high heat. Chop the cooked romanesco into 1 inch chunks. Add the fusilli to the boiling water and stir well. Cook until al dente. While the pasta is cooking, put the chopped garlic, hot red pepper flakes, and 3 tablespoons of the olive oil in a 12-inch skillet and place over medium high heat. When the garlic is sizzling, add the chopped romanesco, season generously with salt, and sauté over medium heat, stirring periodically, until the pasta is done. If the romanesco begins to stick on the bottom of the skillet add a little bit of the boiling pasta water. When the fusilli are al dente, drain well, toss with the sauce, add the remaining tablespoon olive oil, and the grated pecorino cheese, and serve.