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Some glimmers of spring are starting to appear in season, like wild garlic and purple sprouting broccoli, which I found this week at the GC farmers’ market. This recipe is inspired by several versions, by cooks and food writers Rachel Roddy and Samin Norsat, and one of the most delicious pastas I had on a visit to Tuscany. It’s one of my favourite pastas to make because it’s so effortless and comforting, perfect to make when getting home after a long day at work. I feel that a short pasta works best for this recipe. This week I made it with rigatoni, but have also used casarecce, orecchiette; go with your favourite shape.
Serves 1 (multiply by however many you’re cooking for)
7-10 spears purple sprouting broccoli
2 wild garlic leaves, finely sliced
2 tbs olive oil
Parmesan or alternative
Bring a medium pot of water to boil. Season very well with coarse sea salt.
Add the purple sprouting broccoli to the pot and blanch until tender but still vibrant in colour.
Heat the olive oil in a saucepan then add the broccoli and wild garlic. Add a little of the cooking water and keep cooking at a low heat while cooking the pasta.
Meanwhile, cook the pasta according to the time on the package. Taste as it cooks, you want the pasta to have a bite to it.
Once pasta is cooked, add directly to sauce without draining and save some of the pasta water. Toss pasta into sauce, add a small amount of pasta water as you go, until the sauce clings to the pasta. You can also put the lid on the pan and shake it back and forth on the stove to bring the pasta and sauce together.
Plate and finish with generous dusting of parmesan.
This recipe was created for GC by Adrianna Palazzolo, chef at The River Cafe and frequent visitor and big fan of the GC farmers' market. Each week she visits the market and cooks according to the produce she finds there. The market also helps her keep a strong awareness of what is available seasonally and locally throughout the year. The market has been a way for her to connect to her home-cook self and motivation to get excited about ingredients when away from the busy kitchen at work. Adrianna is hugely inspired by Alice Waters' work, particularly her book We are What We Eat, surrounding ideas around regeneration and convenience. She is also a new member of Slow Food UK.