Yield: 4 – 6 servings
Time: 30 minutes
Minestra di Broccoli alla Romana a tasty soup to brighten up the dullest of the winter days. Simple and heartwarming it is prepared in less than 30 minutes. To make it more substantial, I normally place a toast drizzled with extra virgin olive oil on top of it.
- 1 broccoli head about 2 cups (450 g), washed and broken into florets
- ½ cup (115 g) pancetta or good quality smoked ham, cut into sticks (optional)
- 2 Tbsp olive oil
- 2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
- 1 large ripe tomato, peeled, seeded and roughly chopped
- ½ cup (115 g) Italian parsley leaves, roughly chopped
- 6 cups (1 ½ L) beef or vegetable broth
- 5 oz (150 g) spaghetti, broken into about 2 ½ inches (6 cm) pieces
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- salt and freshly ground pepper
Heat olive oil over medium heat in a large saucepan. Add the pancetta sticks and saute until lightly crisp (optional). Add the garlic slices and sauté it briefly. Add the broccoli florets and sauté for 2 minutes longer or until broccoli is nicely covered with the olive-pancetta oil mix. Add the tomato, salt, and pepper. Set aside on a plate.
Bring beef or vegetable stock to a boil in the same saucepan. Add the spaghetti. Cook it according to the package instructions adding broccoli during the last 3-4 minutes. Spaghetti and broccoli should be “al dente”. Add the lemon juice and adjust seasonings if necessary. Sprinkle with parsley and Parmesan and serve.