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Alessi cuisine



Orecchiette with vegetable sauce and broccoli

(Orecchiette con sughetto vegetale sui "Broccoletti" comodati alla toscana)

  • 400 grams of "orecchiette"
  • 1/2 kg of broccoli of black cabbage with some of their leaves
  • 2 big red onions cut in thin slices
  • 1/2 kg of tomato purée
  • 5-6 spoons of olive oil
  • 3 crumbled hot chili peppers
  • 1 meat stock cube
  • 50 grams of grated Parmesan cheese
  • salt
  • pepper
Cut the broccoli in big pieces eliminating the hard part of the stalk. Cover them with fresh water and leave them in the water for 1/2 hour. Then take a saucepan and put some oil, the slices of onion and the hot chili peppers and, over a brisky heat, turning very often, let them wither for about 5-6 minutes, but without browning. Add the tomato purée and the meat stock cube and continue with the cooking, always over a brisky heat and continuously turning and mixing, for 4-5 minutes more, then add the drained broccoli. Turn them (please take care not to break them) and mix them very well with the cooking bottom, decrease the heat in order to have a soft cooking, cover the saucepan and let the broccoli stew for 7-8 minutes. At the right time turn them, check the consistency and eventually add a big spoon of hot water, salt and pepper, adjust the heat for a slight cooking, cover with a lid and let the stuff cook for 30 minutes more or until the hardest stalks will become tender (sometimes shake the covered saucepan to avoid anything will attach on the bottom).
In the meanwhile cook the "orecchiette" (they should be "al dente"), drain them (keep some of the cooking water) and put them in a frying pan with abundant stewed broccoli. Sauté these ingredients, mixing very well "orecchiette" and broccoli and gradually add some spoons of the pasta cooking water and half amount of Parmisan cheese. After 3-4 minutes serve this recipe in the plates with some more Parmisan cheese.
"Orecchiette" and black cabbage do not belong to the ingredients of the Tuscany tradition. But this vegetable recipe has resulted very welcome to PENTOLA DELL'ORO, thanks to its kind and agreeable tastes and flavours and not only for a matter of fashion; so that, every year and during this season, we put it forward again and it always has a very good popularity rating. The use of cooking water to sauté pasta and the various ingredients, especially the fat ones, is a quite common habit for us, and now this habit has been highlighted by one of the most famous Italian chefs, Angelo Paracucchi *Rizzoli, 1982*, whose work has inspired and influenced our autodidact cooking.

A Giuseppe Alessi recipe
Translated by Gianna Toni
Picture by Kee-Ho Casati

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