There are times when we feel lazy or tired to cook the entire meal, in such a time we prefer something like a pot meal, which is filling as well as healthy. Broccoli Soupy Pasta is just that. It is super healthy and super yummy and best on a tired weekday night. I am sure it will soon be your and kids’ favorite comfort food.
Preparation time: 10 mins
Cooking time: 15-18 mins
- Broccoli florets: about 2 cups
- Onion: 2 medium (diced)
- Boiled Potatoes: 2 medium (finely mashed)
- Garlic: 2 large cloves
- bay leaf: 1 nos
- Cornflour: 1 tbsp
- Fresh cream: 1/4 cup
- Cream Cheese : 1/4 cup
- Cheddar Cheese 2 slices/cubes
- Butter: 4 tbsp
- Pasta: about 350 g (of your choice; I prefer fusilli)
Boiling the Pasta
In a heavy-base pot, add sufficient water, and bring it to boil. Add 1 tbsp oil and some salt to the water. As the water begins to boil, add pasta. Boil it for about 12 mins. Check if the pasta is done by cutting it in between. Make sure it is al-dente. It should be 70-75 % cooked. Rest will be cooked with Pasta sauce. Remove it in a strainer add a tsp oil so that it does not stick to each other. But the best situation is when the sauce is ready and pasta is directly transferred to the sauce. Therefore in the meanwhile, we will start working on the sauce.
Making Soupy Sauce
You can Blanch broccoli florets in Pasta boiled water. Boil the broccoli florets for 30 sec and then wash them with icy cold water and keep it aside. This will retain its color. Also, I do not discard the water in which I boil pasta. As it has the flavor of Pasta and if add to pasta sauce instead of regular water, it gives a smooth texture to your pasta sauce.
In a saucepan add butter, as the butter melts add onion and garlic and a bay leaf, saute it on medium flame. As the onions turn translucent, add blanched broccoli florets. Saute it for a couple of mins. Add salt and your favorite Italian seasoning at this time. I added black pepper, oregano, sweet basil, and because I like a hint of spiciness, I added chili flakes too. Now add 2 cups of Pasta to this. Let it simmer for about 3-4 mins.
Now remove the bayleaf from the water with the help of a tong and puree the rest in a mixer/grinder. You can also use a hand blender for this. At this point add boiled and finely mashed potatoes. So that it will blend well. Mashed potatoes will give desired thickness to your Pasta sauce.
Now in a small bowl take cream cheese and whisk it manually. Add cream to it and again whisk it till the consistency is smooth and there are no lumps lefts. Keep this aside. In absence of cream cheese, you can also use rich yogurt along with fresh cream
In a pan add 1 tbsp butter, as butter melts add one tbsp cornstarch and roast it. As it is roasted well slowly add half a cup of water. Be careful as there are no lumps formed. As the water is evenly dissolved, add the cream cheese and cream mixture to it.
Once the cream mixture is dissolved, add the broccoli puree and mix well. You can also add puree of blanched spinach to it, or a tbsp of Pesto Sauce for adding to its flavour. Now add cheese to it.
This can also be served as a Broccoli Soup. It tastes absolutely heavenly. But to make it a complete meal or Pot meal I will be add boiled Pasta to it. Simmer for a couple of minutes till the pasta absorbs the flavor of the soup and the consistency turns thicker. Garnish it with shredded cheese and fresh chives. Serve it warm with a baguette and your super healthy and super yummy pot meal is ready.