Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Broccoli Cream Pesto

Somehow I haven't dedicated any posts yet to my love of broccoli.  I was a little weirdo kid, and while I refused to eat fruits, I could have had broccoli for every meal.  When I moved into my first apartment and wasn't great shakes at cooking, I ate broccoli almost every day (which I'm sure my roommates loved).  Last weekend I went to the grocery store and came home with about two pounds of broccoli.  I may have a problem.  Luckily, Deb from Smitten Kitchen (who has a toddler with remarkably similar eating habits to my own) recently posted a recipe for Spaghetti with Broccoli Cream Pesto Sauce.  So good and really easy to make.

Pasta with Basil Cream Pesto Sauce (modified slightly from Smitten Kitchen)

1/2 pound broccoli cut into florets
1/2 pound dried pasta (I prefer rotini, the shape lets the sauce stick to the noodles better)
2 tablespoons olive oil
1/2 small onion, diced
2 cloves garlic, minced
Salt and pepper to taste
1/8 tsp. red pepper flakes
8 TB. heavy cream
Grated parmesan cheese to top

Bring a large pot of water to boil.  Steam broccoli over boiling water using a steamer attachment or mesh strainer, or steam separately in the microwave.  Once broccoli is tender (approx. 5-6 minutes on stove, 3-4 minutes in microwave), remove from pot and add pasta.  Cook until tender (approx. 7 minutes).  Reserve 1 cup of pasta water, strain and remove pasta from pot. 

In the bottom of the pan, heat olive oil over medium-low heat.  Add onion and cook until soft, stirring frequently (~ 5 minutes).  Add garlic and continue to stir for 1 minute.  Add in cooked broccoli, salt and pepper, and red pepper flakes.  Continue to cook for 3-5 minutes.  

Transfer everything from pot into a food processor and pulse until everything is chopped through.  Transfer back to the pot, still on medium-low heat, and stir in cream.  Add reserved pasta water, one tablespoon at a time, until sauce begins to appear saucy.  Add cooked pasta to pan and toss with the sauce until all of the noodles are covered.  Serve with a lot of parmesan cheese on top.  


  1. I am a pesto freak. I'll seriously slather it on anything and everything, but I've NEVER tried broccoli pesto! I can't wait to test this out!

    The Glossy Life

  2. This looks so delicius!


  3. This looks absolutely delicious!! xo, Julie

  4. oh my goodness yum! i need to try this recipe for sure!

  5. Ok, I am making this right away. Your photo looks great and anything pesto inspired is something I have to try.

    Stay in the Lines