Roasting the vegetables gives them a slight sweetness that is countered by the briny olives and salty cheese.
1/2 pound fennel bulb
1/2 cup kalamata olives, pitted and halved
2 teaspoons chopped fresh rosemary
1 1/2 teaspoons chopped fresh oregano
2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved
1/8 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon extravirgin olive oil
8 ounces uncooked penne (about 2 cups)
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup (3 ounces) freshly grated pecorino Romano cheese
How to Make It
Preheat oven to 450°.
Cut fennel bulb in half lengthwise; discard core. Chop the fennel into bite-sized pieces. Combine fennel, olives, rosemary, oregano, and tomatoes in a 13 x 9-inch baking dish. Sprinkle fennel mixture with pepper; drizzle with olive oil. Toss well to coat. Bake fennel mixture at 450° for 30 minutes or until fennel is tender, stirring once.
Prepare pasta according to package directions, omitting salt and fat. Drain; place in a large bowl. Add fennel mixture and salt, and stir to combine. Add cheese; toss to combine.
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