Anne's Blog

A Coronavirus Lockdown Recipe: Buon Appetito!

Date: March 14, 2020 - categories: - 4 Comments

With the coronavirus lockdown, all over Italy, probably everyone’s eating better than ever: more time to cook…

…although a buonissima pasta with broccoli takes little preparation time and requires just a few ingredients: broccoli, currants, garlic, pine nuts, and olive oil. You may wish to try this dish of Pino’s mamma, Signora Vincenza, “i pasta cu’ i vroccoli a’rriminata” (Sicilian dialect for “pasta with broccoli mixed in”).

Start this savory primo (“first course”) by boiling the washed broccoli briefly in salted water. Drain the broccoli when still bright green and not too soft. Save the water as the pasta will be cooked in the broccoli water.

Dice 2 garlic cloves:

Cover saucepan with extra-virgin (only!) olive oil

‘….and simmer diced garlic cloves just until golden.

Add broccoli to the diced garlic

……moistening as necessary with a bit of the hot water of the cooked broccoli:

Stir in a handful of pinenuts and one of currants (I used raisins this time) and simmer about ten minutes until the broccoli is soft (but not overcooked!):

As the broccoli mixture simmers, bring water of broccoli to a boil:

Add pasta (penne or rigatoni are best) when water reaches a rolling boil:

Drain the penne when al dente (“to the tooth”), ssetting aside some of the pasta water if needed to moisten the sauce. Fold in the broccoli mixture:

Before serving, sprinkle with parmigiano – or grated pecorino (sheep’s milk cheese):

I’m not sure this pasta was as good as that once made by Signora Vincenza, Pino’s mamma…..

Put Pino did have a second helping…..

Click here for another favorite Signora Vincenza recipe

Read about – and see! – Assisi during coronavirus lockdown

Click here for another “coronavirus lockdown” recipe

Click here to read about Novella’s vegetable stand during the coronavirus lockdown

Read hereabout an outdoor market visit to ward off a CPA (Coronavirus Panic Attack)

Click here to read about – and see! – a favorite Orvieto eating spot (to ward off CPA)

Read about a Pino feast on March 8th as coronavirus distraction 

Click here to read about March 8th – as a coronavirus antidote

Peppa is always perfect distraction from a CPA

Read about a stop for fresh pasta to ward off a CPA


  • Janet Eidem says:

    Very sweet final photo. There will be many stories to tell when the lockdown is an event of the past. “Remember when…” Stay strong, stay healthy in your hilly paradise.

  • Louise Lockwood says:

    Thank you for sharing these family recipes – another to add to our list to try. We hope it will come close to the original. Looks delicious!

  • RACHEL COHEN says:

    I love the last photo in this group – the one of you and Pino smiling at each other. Glad you’re sitting the virus out in health! Love to you from Oregon.

  • Lyn Beckenham says:

    I have tried this recipe a number of times & I can guarantee you it *is* delicious!

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