Sunday, March 20, 2011

Pasta with Broccoli and Cheese Sauce

1 cup creme fraiche
5 ounces sliced fontina or other melting cheese
5 ounces freshly grated Parmesan
sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 pound purple sprouting broccoli
2 large egg yolks
1 small bunch fresh marjoram, oregano or thyme tips, leaves picked

freshly grated Parmesan, for serving
extra virgin olive oil

tagliatelle, fresh or dried

Preparing the pasta with broccoli and cheese sauce:
Bring a large pan of salted water to the boil. In a bowl large enough to rest on top of the pan, put your creme fraiche, fontina or other melting cheese along with Parmesan and a pinch of salt and pepper. Place the bowl over the pan for the cheeses to slowly melt.

Trim the ends off the broccoli and finely slice the stalks diagonally. Leave the florets whole, cutting any larger ones in half.

Remove the bowl with the cheeses from above the pan once it's melted and oozing.

If using fresh pasta, drop the pasta and broccoli into the boiling water. Boil hard for 2 to 3 minutes, until the pasta is just cooked through. If using dried pasta, put the pasta into the boiling water and add the broccoli for the last 2 to 3 minutes of the pasta's cooking tie.

In a separate bowl, whisk the egg yolks and the marjoram or other chosen herb leaves) until combined and then stir into the cheese sauce.

Drain the pasta and broccoli, reserving a little of the cooking water, and quickly toss them with the sauce (the heat from the pasta will be enough to cook the eggs through). If the sauce is a little thick, add a few splashes of cooking water to make it silky and loose. Taste and adjust the seasoning, if necessary.

Serve immediately with some extra Parmesan sprinkled over the top and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil.

Serves 4


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