Orecchiette with Cauliflower and Green Beans {Orecchiette con Cavolfiore e Fagiolini}

by cakeduchess on May 6, 2012 · 22 comments

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You can stop by my house most days of the week and find me either baking or making pasta. Most days I am probably doing both. Pasta is something we can all agree on over here and you may find it hard to believe my kids love pasta with cauliflower. They really love it.

If you are a die-hard reader of my blog you may be protesting saying, “This looks just like the other orecchiette dish you posted?!?” You may not remember (I didn’t remember) but my husband did, “You posted an orecchiette dish before, right?” 
But I explained to him that this cauliflower pasta dish is different and that other post was way back in September. Surely enough time has passed to post another incredible cauliflower pasta dish. Plus, this one has green beans in it. 
Bear with my slight cauliflower crush.
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Don’t roll your eyes and wrinkle your noses. What do you mean you don’t have a crush on cauliflowers?!?;) Do you know how good they are for you and their taste is so mild. I bet you could even get your kids to try them in an irresistible pasta dish like this one. I dare you to try!

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This month’s #love blog hop theme is pasta!  Please join in on the #pastalove fun by linking up any pasta recipe (sweet or savory) from the month of May 2012. Be sure to link back to this post so that readers know to come back to this #pastalove event.

You could also follow the #pastalove fun on twitter!

Check out all my fabulous co-hosts and see what they made:

ASTIG Vegan ~ Richgail ~  @astigvegan
Badger Girl Learns to Cook ~ Kimberly ~ @BdgrGrl
BigFatBaker ~ Erin ~ @BigFatBaker
Bon a croquer ~ Valerie ~ @Valouth
Cake Duchess ~ Lora ~ @cakeduchess
Elephant Eats ~ Amy
Hobby And More ~ Richa ~ @betit19
Mis Pensamientos ~ Junia ~ @juniakk
No One Likes Crumbley Cookies ~ TR ~ @TRCrumbley
Oh Cake ~ Jessica ~ @jesshose
Rico sin Azucar ~ Helena ~ @ricosinazucar
Simply Reem ~ Reem ~ @simplyreem
Soni’s Food for Thought ~ Soni ~ @sonisfood
Teaspoon of Spice ~ Deanna ~ @tspbasil
That Skinny Chick Can Bake ~ Liz ~ @Thatskinnychick
The Spicy RD ~ EA ~ @thespicyrd
The Wimpy Vegetarian ~ Susan ~ @wimpyvegetarian
Vegan Yack Attack! ~ Jackie ~ @veganyackattack
Vegetarian Mamma ~ Cindy ~ @VegetarianMamma
You Made That? ~ Suzanne ~ @YouMadeThatblog

Orecchiette with Cauliflower and Green Beans {Orecchiette con Cavolfiore e Fagiolini}

1 pound green beans, ends trimmed and cut into 2-inch lengths
1 pound orecchiette pasta
1 head cauliflower, cored, cut into florets
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus extra as needed
1 small onion, diced
Parmigiano Reggiano, for grating (or whatever cheese you like for your pasta)
salt and pepper to taste

Directions:

In a heavy-bottomed saucepan, bring 6-quarts of water to a boil and add 2 tablespoons of salt. When the water comes to a boil, add the green beans and blanch until they turn bright green and are tender (approximately 10 minutes). Using a slotted spoon, remove the beans and place in a colander. Run cold water over the beans for a minute to keep them from cooking any more. Set the beans aside. Add the pasta into the same boiling water cook pasta to al dente according to package directions. 
Divide the cauliflower into florets. Bring a medium sauce pan filled with a little bit of water to a boil. Add the cauliflower on top of your steamer and let the cauliflower simmer covered. Steam the cauliflower for about 10 minutes.  
While the cauliflower is steaming, sauté’ the onion.  Remove the cauliflower from the steamer and pulse a few times in a food processor. You could also mash the cauliflower with a potato masher. 
In a large bowl, add the green beans, sautéed onion and mix together. Drain the pasta (reserving about a 1/2 cup of the pasta water) and add to the cauliflower mixture. If needed, add some of the reserved pasta water and a little more extra-virgin olive oil. Sprinkle on some grated Parmigiano Reggiano. Season with salt and pepper and serve immediately.  

Buon Appetito! Hope you are having a super weekend.

{ 22 comments… read them below or add one }

Lizzy May 6, 2012 at 10:46 am

Mmmmmmm….I have a crush on cauliflower, too! And with pasta makes it even better!!! Sending you lots of #pastalove for sharing this delectable dish :)

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Jamie May 6, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Yes yes yes we both – JP and I – love cauliflower and oddly enough after not having cooked it literally in years we (he) is starting to bring it home regularly and making gratins, salads, etc. Love this pasta dish and sooo Italian! Okay, gotta cook along since we make pasta so often for dinner!

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Lael Hazan @educatedpalate May 6, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Our youngest adores cauliflower, as she says, “it is my FAAAAVVVVVORITE”. She can’t get enough. It is hard to believe that many in the US don’t share the crush, thanks for reminding them.

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Deanna - Teaspoon of Spice May 6, 2012 at 3:01 pm

True confession: I adore almost every veggie but the appeal of cauliflower has always alluded me. However, I’m trying and if any dish is going to get my crush going, it could very well be this one b/c I’m a pasta fiend :)

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Helena / Rico sin Azúcar May 6, 2012 at 7:03 pm

So nice, Lora! I cooked this sort of pasta some time ago and I liked its shape a lot (I love big shells, or rather… I love any BIG type of pasta ;-)
I never added cauliflower to pasta, but sounds good.

Sending you loads of #pastalove!

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Lisa May 6, 2012 at 8:15 pm

I think cauliflower is one of the most underrated vegetables out there. I love cauliflower, and this is a fantastic way to incorporate it with pasta, the green beans a unique surprise! I also love orecchiette, especially making them from scratch..pulling the tiny dough balls across a lightly floured board with one finger, and boom, look it’s an ear! ;) This looks so mouth-watering, Lora..I want it for dinner tonight!

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Cake Duchess May 7, 2012 at 2:03 am

Thank you! I can just see you making your own delicious orecchiette, Lisa. I think they are too underrated;)

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Reeni May 7, 2012 at 12:22 am

I have a crush on cauliflower too! I LOVE it with pasta and parmesan. A match made in heaven! xoxo

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Soni May 7, 2012 at 11:38 am

I loved your recipe!!Tried commenting yesterday, but my computer was playing-up!Cauliflower sounds like a great vegetable to be added to pastas, but somehow I never thought of using it!Will be trying out this recipe very soon :)
Happy #pastalove!

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EA-The Spicy RD May 7, 2012 at 2:05 pm

Lovely dish! I have yet to convince my kids that cauliflower is yummy, but I would glad try again with this dish. Love that it’s healthy and simple, and, no doubt, delicious! Happy to celebrate #pastalove with you Lora :-)

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Reem | Simply Reem May 7, 2012 at 8:15 pm

Beautiful combination of flavors!!!
Sending you lots of #Pastalove my friend.. :-)

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Lemons and Anchovies May 8, 2012 at 2:49 am

No need to convince me– I like cauliflower and love orecchiette pasta. They come together very nicely in this dish–not surprised your kids like it. :)

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www.you-made-that.com May 8, 2012 at 6:20 am

great way to get my kids to try some cauliflower, thanks for the recipe. sending you #pastalove :)

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Cindy DG May 8, 2012 at 8:49 pm

Pasta is something we all agree upon too :) Love this dish! :) Sending you some #pastalove! Have a great week!
Cindy

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Amy @ ElephantEats May 8, 2012 at 10:46 pm

I love cauliflower so I’m ok with you posting as many recipes as you want :) #pastalove!

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Priscilla @ShesCookin May 9, 2012 at 5:43 am

I wished you lived closer so I could stop by. We love pasta and cauliflower – put the two together – fantastico! Pinned for dinner inspiration. P.S. That’s sweet that your hubby remembers your posts :)

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Junia May 9, 2012 at 3:55 pm

lora, i love cauliflower!!! never thought about putting it in pasta! what a fabulous pasta dish :D

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Cake May 9, 2012 at 7:23 pm

Mmm… cauliflower! Yum! I also think orechiette are an under-utilized pasta. I’m thrilled to see them used. Yay #pastalove!

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A tavola insieme con...Daniela May 9, 2012 at 9:55 pm

I love orecchiette! last summer we went to Puglia…and we discovered that this pasta goes well with anything! brava! daniela

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Richa May 11, 2012 at 10:11 pm

i cant have enough or cauli too! love the beans in there and the gorgeous pasta!

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Georgie May 16, 2012 at 3:40 pm

This recipe, the photo’s have me reminiscing a beautiful Italian village. The table is set in a an open field, with mix matched furniture, and homemade pasta! I love it!

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SweetSugarBelle May 22, 2012 at 6:43 am

This is right up our alley Lora! Gorgeous dish, I cannot wait to try it. I have some cauliflower lovers too!

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