Today I am so excited to share yet another delicious, easy, beautiful pasta dish with you! A wonderful combination of textures and flavors all harmonizing with your taste buds, to an end result you are going to absolutely love!
Song of the day: "It's my Birthday" by will.i.am., Cody Wise.
When in doubt Pasta is always a win win!
When we are in Italy and spending time with Nicoletta's family, pasta is served everyday, and I am not complaining, lol. Funny thing is returning back to Canada we have pasta maybe once a week, although lately we have stepped up the game as you may have well observed. If you could see my face you would see a big smile. Okay, I'm a carb-aholic, so what, it's delicious and beautiful.
Come with me today in our kitchen, and we are going to make Baked Orecchiette with Broccoli and Crispy Guanciale!
Baked Orecchiette with Broccoli and Crispy Guanciale, the list of ingredients:
I absolutely love dishes like this. With few ingredients you can have a dish packed with flavor and texture. This is what you are going to need:
- Orecchiette Pasta
- Broccoli fleurettes
- Dried red chili flakes
- Ricotta cheese
- Pecorino Romano or Parmigiano Reggiano
- Fresh basil
- Evo oil
- Bread crumbs
Easy, Breezy, and beautiful!
The prep and process are pretty easy for this Baked Orecchiette with Broccoli and Crispy Guanciale.
- Firstly, get a large pot of salted water on boil. While waiting for the water to come to boil, clean, wash, and cut the broccoli into fleurettes. Also cut the guanciale into nice thin strips.
- Secondly, get a cast iron pan and toss in guanciale, bring to a medium to high heat and sauté till golden and crispy. Take out of pan and place in a paper towel lined ramekin. Watch it carefully, we don't want to burn those nice morsels of flavor.
- Thirdly, in goes the orecchiette, which will cook for about ½ the cooking time. More so, we are going to place the broccoli fleurettes into the pot with the orecchiette. This is going to add so much flavor to the pasta. At this time pre-heat the oven to 200° C (400° F).
- Fourthly, we want to save the renderings from the guanciale, we add just a drizzle of olive oil in the same cast pan, along with the garlic whole but pressed, and also a pinch of the red chili flakes. I always swish the ingredients with the oil just to infuse those flavors together!
- Lastly, when the pasta is nice and al dente, we take it out of the pot along with the broccoli using a sieve, and into the cast iron pan with the oil, garlic, and chili flakes. We want to keep that pasta water so don't drain the pasta and waste all that goodness down a drain! On goes the heat to a medium and some good tossing to get the pasta and broccoli well coated with the infused oil.
We are almost ready to get this wonderful pasta into the oven. Furthermore, some little touches to kick the flavors and texture a bit!
- Take some of the pasta water and pour it into the pan. Stir the pasta.
- Next turn off the heat and add the fresh basil, dollops of the ricotta, some grated Parmigiano or Pecorino, a dusting of the fine bread crumbs and a little drizzle of olive oil.
- This bad boy is ready for the oven. 10 minutes and a little grill for the last minute and the end result is this golden, crispy edged, aromatic full of color pasta dish! Absolutely lovely!
A little garnish goes a long way!
I love garnishing, it enhances the presentation, and adds wonderful notes of fresh flavor to the mix. For this Baked Orecchiette with Broccoli and Crispy Guanciale, we want some fresh chopped basil, a drizzle of Italian gold, evo oil, plus the wonders of those wonderful crispy morsels of guanciale. That's it, we are ready to plate and most of all eat! Are you all hungry now?
Gotta love the flavors and textures of this Baked Orecchiette with Broccoli and Crispy Guanciale.
I am so excited to dig into this dish. Mmmmmmmmm, the orecchiette is perfectly cooked. It has that slight nutty bite, more so those pockets are filled with the earthy sweetness of the broccoli, the heat of the chili flakes, and that lovely creamy ricotta, garlic, Parmigiano/Pecorino mix! Yummy!
The crispness that happens with the bread crumbs is amazing, mixed with the melted crispy cheese has me wanting to get forkful after fork full of goodness. That fresh basil is like reaching enlightenment along with that evo oil! More so, the little morsels of salty crisp deep profound guanciale is just the thing to punch the flavors to the promise land! If you love pasta as much as I do, this is a perfect dish. Beautiful, full of wonderful aroma, and textures galore! Make tonight pasta night!
Hey, today's my birthday! Lol!Print
- 300 g orecchiette (we used Rummo)
- 1 ½ cups broccoli florets (a medium head)
- 35 g (a couple of slices) guanciale, slivered
- 1 Tbsp evo oil
- 1 clove of garlic, pressed
- a pinch of red chili flakes
- ¼ to ½ cup ricotta
- 3-4 fresh basil leaves, broken
- ¼ cup grated Pecorino or Parmigiano
- 1 Tbsp breadcrumbs
- a drizzle of olive oil
- Bring a medium pot of salted water to boil.
- While the water is coming to a boil, place guanciale and evo oil in a cast iron pan and saute till guanciale turns golden in color. Take out of pan and place in a paper towel-lined ramekin. Turn off heat.
- In the same cast skillet after cooled, add in garlic and chili flakes and swish in the pan to flavor.
- Toss orecchiette into the boiling water. Cook for 7 minutes, then throw in the broccoli florets and cook both for an additional 5 minutes.
- Preheat the oven to 200°C (400°F).
- Drain pasta and broccoli with a skimmer, reserving the pasta water. Place in the cast skillet with garlic and chilies.
- Turn the heat on to a medium, toss the ingredients well for about 1 minute.
- Turn off heat, drizzle half a ladle of pasta water, add dollops of ricotta and basil. Top with Pecorino and breadcrumbs and drizzle with evo oil.
- Place in preheated oven and bake for 10 minutes. Turn on the grill for the last couple of minutes.
- Take out of the oven, garnish with crispy guanciale, chopped basil, and a drizzle of evo oil.
As far as the cheese you decide. The Parmigiano is more subtle, while the Pecorino has a good pungent bite to it.
If you can't find guanciale, pancetta will work fine too or even speck!
- Prep Time: 10 minutes
- Cook Time: 25 minutes
- Category: Main
- Method: stovetop/baked
- Cuisine: Italian
Keywords: orecchiette, pasta, broccoli, Italian bread crumbs, Evo oil, garlic, fresh basil, ricotta, guanciale,
When I am not cooking, I enjoy playing musical instruments, singing, writing. I have learned over the years to live in gratitude and enjoy the moment.