The 40 Minute Family Meal: A Pasta Sauce, Cruciferous, for Us

Weary of cooking a main and side, earlier this week I decided to combine the two in one, in a vegetable-rich pasta that benefits from copious amounts of olive oil, anchovies for stealthy depth of flavor, and nice long caramelization in the pan. The main components are cruciferous vegetables (in this case broccoli and cauliflower. We bought orange and purple of the latter for fun this weekend at the market). This dish tosses the whole Italian notion of minimal sauce out the window. This is about 50/50 pasta to vegetables—and this is a good way of getting you and yours to eat theirs and love it while they do.

6 cups roughly chopped broccoli, orange cauliflower, and purple cauliflower
3 garlic cloves, minced
1 little can of anchovies
a big pinch of red pepper flakes
olive oil

Get some salted water boiling. Heat more olive oil than you’re inclined to in large sautee pan over medium heat. Add the garlic, anchovies, red pepper flakes and break up anchovies with a wooden spoon. Add the vegetables and let sit over the heat until they start to caramelize a bit. Salt and pepper them. Stir it once and while until they start to soften, about 8 minutes over the heat. Add a bit of water to soften them further. Cook until the vegetables are tasty and tender and have broken down to the point that they’ll meld nicely with the pasta. Cook the pasta, drain, add enough to the pan so that you’ve got a nice balance of the two. Plate it. Parm it.

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2 Responses to The 40 Minute Family Meal: A Pasta Sauce, Cruciferous, for Us

  1. Maura says:

    Hi, I love this dinner, but what if you don’t want anchovies. What’s another thing that’ll be good for the underlying flavor?

  2. Hugh says:

    You could simply just cut out the anchovies altogether and it would still be delicious. If you wanted to absolutely make up for that lost flavor you could also boost the quantities of garlic and the parmesan.

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