Photo: Chris Villano; Styling: Gerri Williams for James Reps
Salt and pepper
1 1/2 bunches broccoli (about 1 1/2 lb. total), cut into florets, stems reserved for another use
1 pound medium shells or penne
1 1/2 cups ricotta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan
2 teaspoons grated lemon zest
1 teaspoon fresh thyme, finely chopped
2 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
How to Make It
Bring a large pot of salted water to boil. Add broccoli and cook until just tender, about 2 minutes. With a slotted spoon, transfer broccoli to a bowl. Add pasta to boiling water and cook until al dente, 10 to 13 minutes or as package label directs.
While pasta is cooking, combine ricotta, Parmesan, lemon zest and thyme in a medium bowl. Warm oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat. Add garlic and sauté until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Stir in broccoli, season with salt and pepper, and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 1 minute longer.
Drain pasta, reserving 1/2 cup cooking water. Return to pot and stir in broccoli and ricotta mixture, adding cooking water to moisten as necessary. Season with salt and pepper. Serve.
So it's not the most flavorful recipe when you go exactly by the ingredients listed. It's still good though, what I really liked was the ability to add pretty much anything you want to it for extra flavor. I've done this recipe three times when looking for a super cheap home cooked meal and I love it for those reasons. Once I added sauteed mushrooms, another time some grilled shrimp. It's a good, basic staple of a recipe that I recommend!!
I had to get rid of some ricotta so I tried this. Decent as is, however i added 1 large boneless skinless chicken breast. Might add some sautéed sweet peppers next time and/or oregano if I try it again.