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Broccoli Pasta

The quintessential flavors of Italy - olive oil, garlic, Parmesan, and red wine vinegar - combine to dramatic effect in this simple dish. Experiment with different types of pasta to find the variety your family most enjoys. The secret - avoid overcooking the pasta or the broccoli.

Food as Medicine
Broccoli is a rich source of kaempferol, a flavonoid that may help to reduce the effects of allergy-promoting substances in the body. The immune-modulating effects of kaempferol may help to explain why broccoli has unique anti-inflammatory benefits. Broccoli is also an excellent source of vitamins A, C and K.


1 lb broccoli or broccolini
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
6 or more large cloves garlic, finely minced or mashed
1 tsp hot red pepper flakes or more to taste
1 lb pasta (penne, rotini, etc.)
2 tablespoons capers and 1 tablespoon of their brine
1 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
dashes of red wine vinegar to taste

  1. Trim ends off broccoli stalks, peel them below outer fibrous layer and cut them in chunks. Cut broccoli heads (or broccolini) into bite-size pieces.
  2. Heat oil in a small skillet, add red pepper flakes and garlic, stir-fry for one minute, remove from heat.
  3. Add pasta to a large pot of boiling water. When pasta is approximately two minutes from being done al dente, add broccoli or broccolini, and cook just until the vegetable is crisp-tender.
  4. Drain pasta/broccoli mixture well, toss with capers, brine, salt to taste, and 3/4 cup cheese.
  5. Add vinegar if desired.
  6. Serve with additional cheese and red pepper flakes.

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Serves 4

Nutrients Per Serving:
Calories 526
Fat 22g
Saturated Fat 6g
(8% calories from fat)
Protein 33g
Carbohydrate 83g
Cholesterol 15mg
Fiber 37g

This recipe is from THE HEALTHY KITCHEN - Recipes for a Better Body, Life, and Spirit by Andrew Weil, M.D and Rosie Daley (Knopf)


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