Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Broccoli Cacio e Pepe

   This morning has started off amazing.  I woke up to a text... or 5 or something... finding out one of my best friends is coming to visit me in a couple weeks.  And, I just received the most wonderful comment on my German Chocolate Cake in a Jar post.  I literally cried when I read it.  So, thank you and I am so happy that you loved the cake!

   And now back to the regularly scheduled post.

   Cacio e pepe just means cheese and pepper.  Hard to wrong with that combination.  The original Roman pasta dish (spaghetti cacio e pepe) uses pecorino romano.  I had parmesan, so that it what I used.  Any hard, aged Italian cheese would work: pecorino, parm, asiago, whatever as long as it is fresh.  This is not the time to use the stuff in a can.  Louis thought people would be more receptive to the roasted broccoli if it had a dip with it.  So, instead of just loading the cheese and pepper straight onto the broccoli, I made a crazy easy dipping sauce.  It took less than 3 minutes to throw together.  This would be a fantastic alternative to ranch or onion dip for a raw veggie tray.
Broccoli Cacio e Pepe
2 bunches broccoli
2 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp grated parmesan
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp black pepper
Dip:
3/4 C Greek yogurt or light sour cream
1/2 C light mayo
1/3 C grated parmesan
1 Tbsp milk
1 tsp fresh cracked black pepper
dash salt

   Combine ingredients for dip.  (Really any liquid dairy will work:  buttermilk, skim, cream....)
   Cut broccoli into fairly large florets.  Toss with oil, cheese, salt and pepper.  Roast at 400 deg F for 8-10 minutes.  (Broccoli should still be pretty crisp.)
   Serves 10. 

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