Here’s what I knew: I knew I wanted a yummy, healthy, Meatless Monday dinner. I knew I wanted to work out when I got home from work. I knew I wanted to also hang out with my little family when I got home from work. Which meant I knew I had to find something fast and uncomplicated. I also knew I had a whole lotta broccoli in the house. So what’s a girl to do? I modified this recipe that I’ve been wanting to make for a hot minute here and pulled a delicious, light-but-satisfying, shockingly kid-pleasing meal together in 20 minutes! No, seriously. Here you go.
WHAT YOU NEED
* 2 small (or 1 large) heads of broccoli, cut down into bite-sized florets
* 2T olive oil
* 3t minced garlic
* 1lb whole wheat penne pasta
* 10 large leaves fresh basil, chopped, plus extra for garnish
* 1 15oz pkg part skim or fat free ricotta cheese
* 1t salt (plus pinch or two for salting pasta water)
* 1t lemon pepper
* grated Parmesan cheese for serving
* crushed red pepper flakes (optional)
WHAT TO DO
Boil some water, then add the broccoli florets and allow them to boil just briefly, about 2 minutes, to soften just a bit. Remove from pot and place in a bowl to cool slightly.
Boil water to cook your pasta (adding a pinch or two of salt to the water), and cook according to package instructions, to al dente.
Meanwhile, heat the 2 tablespoons of olive oil in a pan, and add the garlic, allowing it to just start to sizzle and fry, slightly browning.
When the pasta is ready, drain it and then return it to the pot. Add the garlic/broccoli to the pasta, and then mix in the ricotta and freshly chopped basil. If you like a little heat, add in a 1/2t (or more, to your liking) of crushed red pepper flakes here as well.
Besides the impossibly speedy turn-around time, this dish also apparently possesses magical powers that convert a toddler into a lover of broccoli, as evidenced by this submission to the Clean Plate Club: