May 4, 2014

Pangrattato broccoli, anchovies and capers – in 10 minutes

Sometimes, I don’t feel like cooking dinner…perfectly normal to want a break, right? It’s Friday afternoon and my first thought is to order take away tonight.

At that point, reality bites and I realise that we are no longer living in a city with 24/7 convenience on every corner and a guarantee of cuisine to curb the craving of my taste buds.

I am now living in the country. Beautiful country that is Orange, New South Wales. With so many local delights on offer from the farmers, beautiful produce and fabulous restaurants to boot there is one gap; delicious whole food take-away options.

So I go back to the drawing board ‘our kitchen’ and discover that I have the ingredients which make what is becoming a firm favourite and staple as our ‘take away’ alternative. It’s that quick that I challenge any take away restaurant to be faster by the time you’ve ordered and it’s ready for pick up. I’m talking 10 minutes!

Firstly, if you don’t have these ingredients in your kitchen right now – ALWAYS stock up with them on your shopping list regularly!

They are:

Broccoli, 1-2 heads preferably organic.

Garlic, so essential in cooking and too many health benefits to rattle on about always choose one grown locally!

Lemons – a bowl of lemons on the table always looks good; make sure you always have a steady supply particularly when in season.

Breadcrumbs – I always prefer to blend any leftover bread that goes stale and keep it bagged in the fridge.

Anchovies in oil – jar of either really, I like the white ones.

Capers – jar of salted or in vinegar

Chilli – a long red fresh one or at the very least dry mild-medium chilli flakes

Olive oil – Always, always keep a good supply of EVOO it will last for months and months if stored correctly in dark cool place (not fridge)

Balsamic vinegar – there are many out there, I like the caramalised type.

Spaghetti or if desperate and pasta stocks are running low anything will do; orecchiette is good.

Cheese of the ‘parmesan kind’ – A wedge of something like Grano padano (or Parmigiano Reggiano, pecorino, or vegan alternative)

Optional – if you have flat leaf/continental parsley handy growing in your garden then it adds an extra boost of fresh green good stuff!

NOTE: if you would like a slightly healthier option (without the pasta) and don’t care for adding an extra 15 minutes to your preparation time, please see my recipe for Zucchini spaghetti.

Now you’re ready to prepare a dish that will literally take 10-12 minutes which is as fast as your pasta takes to cook. I’ll also apologise for the image (not my greatest) as it was a quick meal, quick photo and quickly eaten!


This is my Pangrattato broccoli which is well liked by our four-year old. Maybe because it also has loads of Parmigiano Reggiano sprinkled on it but a smile at the dinner table is good enough for me rather than a YUCK!

Ingredients: Serves 4

2 heads of broccoli chopped into small florets (include thinly chopped stalks as well)

3 tablespoons olive oil

2-3 cloves of garlic (2 finely sliced and 1 smashed with the back of a spoon)

6 anchovy fillets

1/2 to a whole long red chilli de-seeded and finely chopped.

1 1/2 tablespoons capers

1 cup breadcrumbs

3 tablespoons lemon juice

1 de-seeded chilli* finely sliced or half teaspoon dried chilli flakes (or as you desire)

1 teaspoon balsamic vinegar

1-2 handfuls of spaghetti

3/4 cup of parmesan and chopped parsley for garnish – optional

sea salt and pepper to season


1. Boil a large pot of water and place spaghetti in with some sea salt. If spaghetti says (12 mins), throw broccoli into water after 5 minutes. If you are choosing to use zucchini spaghetti, place broccoli in a steamer on top with lid on for about 8-9 minutes.

2. Meanwhile in a frying pan, heat olive oil on a low-medium heat and add smashed garlic, anchovies and capers for 2 minutes to infuse.

3. Throw in sliced garlic, chilli and after 1 minute add balsamic vinegar then toss breadcrumbs through to catch the flavour and turn off heat.

4. Drain broccoli and pasta and place back into pot, add lemon juice, remaining tbl of olive oil and stir through pangrattato through pasta.

5. Top with cheese, parsley and season with salt and pepper as required.

*You can leave the chilli out or put a small amount in for children.

Buono Appetito or Enjoy!



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