Orecchiette with Saffron, Chickpeas, and Roasted Broccoli

This recipe from Barilla America uses saffron and chickpeas give the vegetarian pasta a Mediterranean profile. Make sure to roast the broccoli until browned for extra texture and flavor.

3 pounds Barilla Collezione Orecchiette
2 1/2 pounds broccoli florets
1 cup extra-virgin olive oil
salt and pepper
4 small yellow onions, chopped
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
4.2 pounds canned chickpeas, drained
4 teaspoons saffron threads
2 cups grated Parmesan cheese
  1. Cook the Barilla pasta for half the time indicated on the package. Drain pasta and drizzle with some olive oil to prevent from sticking. Place pasta flat on sheet trays or hotel pans and cool in a blast chiller. Alternatively, cool it down in a walk-in cooler. Store in zip lock bags or sealed plastic container; refrigerate and use within several hours.
  2. Toss the broccoli with 1/2 cup oil and season with salt and pepper. Spread onto a sheet pan and roast at 400 degrees until lightly browned, about 15 minutes. Set aside.
  3. Heat 1 teaspoon oil and saute 2 or 3 tablespoon onion until golden. Add a few slices of garlic and a small pinch of saffron. Saute 1 minute.
  4. Meanwhile, reheat 1 cup pasta in simmering water. Drain and add it to the onions with about 1/4 cup pasta water. Stir in 1/2 cup chickpeas and 1/2 cup broccoli and season with salt and pepper. Heat through and plate. Garnish with a generous 1 tablespoon Parmesan.