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Broccolini-Basil Spaghetti

Serves 6

Also called baby broccoli, broccolini tends to have a sweeter flavor than broccoli.


  • 2 bunches broccolini (1 pound), separated into long florets
  • Salt
  • 1 pound whole wheat spaghetti
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 1 can whole tomatoes (28 ounces)
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves (a generous handful), torn
  • Grated Parmigiano Reggiano or Pecorino Romano cheese, for tossing and passing at the table


  1. Fill a large skillet with enough water to reach a depth of 2 inches and bring it to a boil over medium-high heat. Add the broccolini florets and cook for 2 minutes, then drain in a colander. Wipe out the skillet.
  2. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Add the spaghetti and cook to al dente, then drain.
  3. While the pasta is working, heat the skillet that you used for the broccolini over medium heat. Add the butter and melt it, then add the tomatoes and gently mash them with a potato masher or a wooden spoon. Season the tomatoes with salt, then stir in the basil. Lower the heat and simmer for 4 minutes. Add the broccolini and cook for 3 minutes more. Add the pasta and some cheese and toss. Pass more cheese at the table.