This recipe is yet another simple, straightforward combo that highlights the natural flavors of each ingredient. My favorite pasta to serve this over is usually linguini (for the omnivores out there, try this with shrimp instead of broccoli and you’ll never go back to Olive Garden again!), but fun shapes like farfalle or rotelle are good here too because the grooves catch the garlicky sauce. Today, I’ve got some work to do and wanted a quick lunch with minimal clean-up, so I’m enjoying mine over whole wheat couscous.
I’m serious about trying it with shrimp. Before I developed a seafood allergy, this dish was my hands-down favorite meal! I used to take it pot lucks at my local historical society, and I got compliments on it every time! One lady said it was the best pasta she’d had outside of Italy because it’s so fresh and simple. The broccoli makes an ideal veg substitute for the seafood.
Broccoli, Lemon, Garlic Pasta:
- Veg. steamer/steaming basket and saucepan with lid, small sauce pan, large mixing bowl, fork, knife, cutting board, kitchen towels, stove top
- 1 large head broccoli, cut into bite sized pieces with an “X” cut into any trunks (so they steam super quickly)
- The juice and zest of 1 lemon
- 6 Tbsp evoo
- 6 cloves garlic, sliced
- 2 cups whole wheat couscous (or 1 lb of favorite pasta)
- 2 1/2 cups veggie stock (use oiled, salted water if cooking pasta)
- 1 pinch of red pepper flakes (more to taste)
- 1/2 bunch parsley, chopped
- Kosher salt and ground black pepper
- Bring stock to a boil (or salted water if cooking pasta). Put the couscous in the large mixing bowl and add the hot stock. Cover with kitchen towels and let sit for 5 mins. Fluff the couscous with a fork and set aside. OR Cook pasta until desired texture, strain, and set aside.
- At the same time, bring a small amount of water to a boil in the saucepan with a lid. Place the steam basket in the pan, and add the broccoli. Steam 5 mins. Remove from heat and add to the now cooked and fluffed couscous. Repeat, if you’re like me and have a tiny steamer basket, until all the broccoli is cooked
- While the last round of broccoli cooks, heat the evoo in the small sauce pan over med or med-low heat. Add the sliced garlic to the hot oil. Swish the garlic around to keep it from burning. Keep a close eye on it, swirling as needed, and let the garlic cook 2 mins or until softened through. Season with two generous pinches of salt (Remember! This is the sauce for the whole dish, so it’ll seem like a lot of salt in the pan, but once mixed with the pasta and broccoli it’ll be lighter) and a generous few hits of black pepper. Add the pinch of red pepper flakes (or more if you like a real kick). Let cook another minute so the pepper flakes can give the sauce some of their delicious spicy oil.
- Add the lemon juice. Let cook another 30 secs-1 min or until the sauce is bubbling. Pour the sauce over the couscous and broccoli. Top with the lemon zest and parsley and mix well to make sure everything is evenly distributed. Serve hot.