January 25th, 2010

Easy Weeknight Pasta: Spaghetti with Radicchio, Ricotta & Breadcrumbs

spaghetti radicchio

Photo: Martha Stewart

The ChowPapa and I love this comforting weeknight pasta which comes together in about 35 minutes. It’s super simple and gets most of its flavor from garlic toasted breadcrumbs that I could, if left to my own devices, eat by the spoonful. The radicchio flavor is mild to us but, truth be told, isn’t a favorite of our ChowBaby—it’s a little bitter for him. If you think the same may be true for your baby, I offer two easy variations so that you don’t have to miss out. Check ‘em out after the jump.

Spaghetti with Radicchio, Ricotta & Breadcrumbs
adapted from Martha Stewart
(can be adapted for kids 8+ mos)

1 lb organic spaghetti (fettucini would work well, too)
4 tbsp organic olive oil
3 cloves organic garlic, minced
1/2 c flat leaved parsley, finely chopped
1 c plain breadcrumbs
8 oz organic ricotta cheese
1 head radicchio, quartered, cored, thinly sliced crosswise
salt and pepper

1. Put a large pot of salted water on medium-high heat (about 6 qts water to 2 tbs salt). Bring to a boil. Add pasta and cook until al dente. Drain, saving 1 cup of cooking water.

2. In the meantime, heat 2 tablespoons oil in a medium skillet over medium heat. Add garlic and cook until soft but not browned, 1 to 2 minutes. Add parsley and breadcrumbs; cook, stirring frequently, until breadcrumbs are golden, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a bowl, and set aside.

3. Return pasta and reserved cooking liquid to pot. Add ricotta and remaining 2 tablespoons oil. Toss to coat evenly. Add radicchio and half the breadcrumb mixture; season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Serve immediately, sprinkled with remaining breadcrumb mixture.

VARIATION #1 for little ones: Pasta with Ricotta and Breadcrumbs

  • In step 3, set aside kid portion(s) before adding radicchio. Top with breadcrumbs. Continue as directed above for remaining pasta.

VARIATION #2 for little ones: Pasta with Ricotta, Peas & Breadcrumbs

  • In step 1, cook frozen peas in boiling water before removing and adding pasta. Cook enough for as many kiddie portions as you’ll be making. Set aside.
  • In Step 3, set aside kid portion(s) before adding radicchio. Instead, toss with cooked peas and some breadcrumbs. Continue as directed above for remaining pasta.

4 Responses

  1. Kelsey says:

    This is a favorite of ours too and, surprise, sometimes I put a poached egg on top! :)

  2. [...] I started the week with an easy weeknight pasta easily adapted for just-developing palates: Spaghetti with Radicchio, Ricotta & Breadcrumbs [...]

  3. Marc says:

    Sounds like a good one. Im a radicchio grower in california, so finding new easy recipes is fantastic. I tried it last night and i was amazed by the taste and look of the dish.

    By the way, if you want to learn more about who grows radicchio visit http://www.jmarchinifarms.com to check out a cool video about a california radcchio grower.

  4. stacie says:

    a thumbs up from a radicchio grower?! LOVE it! thanks for trying and commenting.

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