Thursday, March 31, 2011

Momma Mia's March Pasta of the Month

There is a saying, "In like a lion, out like a lamb" which so aptly described this month of March.  While there is still a blanket of snow covering my rosebushes, I finally see signs of Spring.  I love Springtime at the base of the Sierra Nevada's.  Temperature wise we never know what to expect.  In the morning you'll use the heater and a few hours later you could be sunning yourself in 70 degree weather.

I also love the bounty that signifies Spring.  Fresh asparagus, artichokes from California, strawberries and a time to plant spinach, perhaps.

  The pasta of the month reminds me of early Spring because we usually make the trek to Southern California for Easter time.  Inevitably, my hubby's mom will make this simple dish.  It's perfect for a large hungry family because it doesn't cost much to make and it takes less than 20 minutes to put together.  It's not the exact replica of her "green pasta", as we call it, but I've adapted it and fine tuned it to our taste.


2 T olive oil

3/4 - 1 cup thinly sliced onion

3 cloves of garlic, minced

3 T panchetta, cooked ahead or microwaved and crumbled

1/2 lb. spaghetti

3 - 4 cups broccoli florets or pieces

1/4 cup pasta water

pinch of salt and pepper

In a large skillet saute onions in oil on medium heat.  Add garlic and remove the pan from heat.  Meanwhile, to a 5 qt pan, add 3 quarts of water and bring to a boil.  Add the pinch of salt and pasta, stir, and reduce the heat to medium high (slower boil).  Cook for about 3 minutes, add broccoli, turn the heat down slightly, stir and cook for another 7 minutes until pasta is done. 
Pasta with broccoli boiling away

 Place the skillet back on the heat with onions and garlic and add the panchetta and pasta water. 
onions, garlic, panchetta and pasta water waiting for the broccoli and pasta

 Drain the pasta and add to the skillet, adding pepper to taste.  Pretty simple, but very good and good for you!  I like to add a little "kick" with red pepper flakes!  No need to wait for Spring, this recipe is great all year!


  1. I love it wish I had some now.

    I love you

  2. Yeah, i know waht you mean. I love pasta with greens!