Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Parmigiano-Crusted Rigatoni with Cauliflower and Prosciutto


I threw together this super easy dinner right before we left on vacation. The sauce is light, creamy, and garlicy and the dish is bulked up with the addition of cauliflower mixed in with the pasta.

This is a 30 minute, start to finish, meal which is great for a weeknight.

The original recipe calls for prosciutto - which I absolutely love - but I had leftover ham on hand that I wanted to use before we left town. It gave the same salty bite to it and was a fraction of the cost of prosciutto. So, those of you with leftover Easter ham - this is a great way to incorporate some of it! I just diced mine small and added it when the recipe calls for the prosciutto to be added.

Parmigiano-Crusted Rigatoni with Cauliflower and Prosciutto
3 1/2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 large garlic clove, thinly sliced
1 cup heavy cream
Kosher salt and freshly ground pepper
3/4 pound rigatoni
One 1 3/4-pound head of cauliflower, cut into 1-inch florets
1 cup panko (Japanese bread crumbs)
1/2 cup freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano cheese
3 ounces sliced prosciutto, cut into 1/4-inch-thick ribbons (or leftover ham!)

Preheat the broiler. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. In a medium skillet, heat 1 tablespoon of the olive oil. Add the garlic and cook over moderate heat until lightly golden, about 3 minutes. Add the cream and simmer until thickened slightly, about 2 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.

Cook the rigatoni until al dente; about 6 minutes before the rigatoni is done, add the cauliflower florets to the pot. Drain, reserving 2 tablespoons of the pasta cooking water.

Meanwhile, in a medium bowl, toss the panko with the Parmigiano cheese and the remaining 2 1/2 tablespoons of olive oil; season with salt and pepper.

Return the rigatoni and cauliflower to the pot. Add the garlic cream, the prosciutto and the reserved pasta water and toss until the pasta is coated. Scrape the pasta into a large shallow baking dish and sprinkle the panko mixture evenly over the top. Broil for about 2 minutes, rotating constantly, until the topping is evenly browned. Serve hot.

Source: Food and Wine

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