My family loves broccoli sautéed with garlic and olive oil, so I decided to try it in a soup with pasta. Broccoli's rich and nutty flavor makes a great broth for this soup and the pasta absorbs some of that flavor, making the soup more substantial. It is also very quick and easy to prepare.
Yield: Serves 4
2 medium cloves garlic
¾ pound broccoli florets
2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper
1 large beef bouillon cube
6 ounces short tubular pasta, or other dried small pasta shape for soup, such as ditalini or small shells
1. Fill a pot with water that will accommodate the broccoli and place over high heat.
2. Peel and finely chop the garlic.
3. When the water is boiling, add 1 teaspoon salt and put in the broccoli. Cook until tender, about 5 minutes after the water comes back to a boil. Drain the broccoli and set aside.
4. Put the garlic and olive oil in a 4- to 6-quart soup pot and place over medium-high heat. After the garlic begins to sizzle, add the cooked broccoli. Season with pepper and lightly with salt and sauté for about 5 minutes. Stir periodically with a wooden spoon, using it to mash the broccoli into small pieces.
5. When the broccoli has finished sautéing, add 4 cups water and the bouillon cube and raise the heat to high. When the water begins boiling, add the pasta and cook covered over medium heat until the pasta is al dente. Serve hot.