For a fresh and easy weeknight dinner, try this recipe for Spaghetti with Broccolini, Chili and Breadcrumbs. The combination of pasta and breadcrumbs is eternally comforting, like a well worn cardigan you pull on at the end of the day. In this recipe that homey pairing is jazzed up with a potent blend of garlic, red chili flakes and black pepper that will get your tastebuds dancing. Just because it’s the weeknight doesn’t mean you can’t have a little fun.
Spaghetti with Broccolini, Breadcrumbs and Chili Flakes
1/2 cup bread crumbs or Panko
Freshly ground black pepper
1 pound spaghetti
2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 pound broccolini, ends trimmed, cut in 1 inch pieces
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 cup grated Pecorino Romano cheese, plus extra for sprinkling
Toast the breadcrumbs in a dry skillet over medium heat until light golden. Sprinkle with 1/2 teaspoon salt and 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper. Transfer to a bowl and set aside.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Add spaghetti and cook until al dente. While the pasta is cooking, heat olive oil and chili flakes in a deep skillet over medium heat. Add broccolini, garlic and 1 teaspoon salt. Saute until broccolini is tender and bright, 3-4 minutes.
Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the water. Transfer pasta to a large bowl. Add broccolini, half of the bread crumbs and 1/2 cup grated cheese. Toss to combine. If the pasta is too thick add a little reserved water to desired taste and consistency. To serve, sprinkle with remaining bread crumbs and cheese, to taste. Garnish with freshly ground black pepper.