This linguine with creamy broccolini sauce is layers upon layers of flavor; from charred broccolini to roasted garlic to caramelized onions, this sauce has everything you need for a simple yet flavor-packed weeknight meal.
Linguine with Creamy Broccolini Sauce
- Large pot
- Baking sheet
- Immersion blender
- 16 ounces linguine
- 2 small bunches broccolini
- 1 small head of garlic
- 2 tablespoons plus 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil divided
- 1 tablespoon butter
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 1 medium yellow onion
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika plus more to taste if desired
- 2 cups chicken stock
- 1 lemon
- ½ cup heavy cream
- ½ cup shredded Parmigiano-Reggiano divided
- A few pinches of fresh parsley and extra virgin olive oil for garnish
- Preheat oven to 425ºF. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and cook the pasta according to the pasta instructions and reserve 1/3 cup of the pasta cooking water. Bring another pot (large enough to later hold the cooked pasta) of water to a boil. Trim the broccolini. Peel and dice the yellow onion. Cut the top off the head of garlic. Zest the lemon into a small bowl and juice the lemon into a separate small bowl. Roughly chop the fresh parsley leaves, if using.
Roast the Garlic:
- Place the head of garlic on a baking sheet and drizzle with 1 teaspoon extra virgin olive oil and sprinkle with salt. Transfer to the oven and roast as you prepare the broccolini, about 15 minutes.
Blanch and Char Broccolini:
- Place the broccolini in the pot of boiling water and boil for 1-2 minutes until bright green. Drain and transfer the broccolini to a bowl of ice water for 2-3 minutes to stop the cooking. Drain and pat dry as much as possible. Return the cooking pot to the stove.
- Turn the broiler on and remove the sheet pan from the oven. Move the garlic to the far corner of the sheet pan and arrange the broccolini in an even layer on the pan. Drizzle the broccolini with 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Broil for 5-6 minutes until the garlic is deep golden brown and the broccolini begins to char and crisp up. Turn off the broiler and set the sheet pan out to cool.
Prepare the Sauce:
- In the pot used to blanch the broccolini, prepare the sauce. Heat the butter and remaining 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil over medium heat until melted and frothy. Add the onion and sauté for 10 minutes until beginning to caramelize. Season with salt, pepper, and smoked paprika. Add the chicken stock and lemon juice and scrape up any browned bits stuck to the bottom of the pot. Boil for 8 minutes and then reduce heat and simmer for 10-12 minutes. Taste and season to your preferences. Pour in the heavy cream and continue to simmer.
Prepare the Garlic and Broccolini:
- Roughly chop the broccolini. Carefully squeeze the garlic out of the skin and roughly chop the cloves. Transfer the chopped broccolini and garlic to the sauce.
Finish the Sauce:
- Using an immersion blender (or blender), purée the sauce until desired consistency is met. You can also skip puréeing the sauce if you don’t have an immersion blender. Once the sauce is smooth and creamy, add half of the parmesan cheese, whisking as you incorporate. Taste and season. Pour in the reserved pasta cooking water and toss the cooked linguine in the sauce until well-coated. Turn off the heat.
- Divide the linguine with creamy broccolini sauce between plates and garnish with the remaining parmesan cheese, fresh parsley, lemon zest, and a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil. Enjoy!