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Pasta Giardiniera


While giardiniera is traditionally a pickled Italian dish, chef Glenn Rolnick chooses to use it to describe his signature pasta dish that is a favorite at his New York City restaurant Carmine's. For a healthier version, skip the heavy cream and only use a ½ cup of cheese. 


  • 1/4 Cup olive oil
  • 1/2 small onion, thinly sliced
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped garlic
  • 1 1/2 Cup sliced cremini mushrooms
  • 1 zucchini, finely diced
  • 8 basil leaves, chiffonade
  • 2 Tablespoons chopped flat-leaf parsley
  • 2 Cups marinara sauce
  • 1 Cup chicken stock
  • 1/4 Cup heavy cream
  • 1 Cup grated Romano cheese
  • 1/4 Cup green peas
  • Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 head broccoli, cut into 3-inch spears with florets
  • 12 Ounces pasta


In a large sauté pan, heat the olive oil over medium-high heat. When the oil is hot, add the onions and garlic and cook, stirring, for about 2-3 minutes or until the onions turn golden brown.

Add the mushrooms, zucchini, basil, and parsley. Raise the heat to high and cook the mixture for 3-4 minutes or until the vegetables start to soften. Add the marinara sauce, chicken stock, and heavy cream. Bring the sauce to a boil over medium-high heat and boil it for 3-4 minutes or until it starts to thicken. Stir in ½ cup of the cheese and peas. Season the sauce to taste with salt and pepper.

Meanwhile, in a large pot of boiling salted water, cook the broccoli for 3-4 minutes or until it is al dente. Lift it from the water with a slotted spoon and add it to the sauce. Reserve the water in the pot to cook the pasta. Let the sauce sit, off the heat, for 10-15 minutes to flavor it with the vegetables.

Bring the water to a boil again, add the pasta, and cook it for 7-8 minutes. The cooking time will vary depending on the type of pasta. Drain the pasta well and transfer it to a shallow bowl or platter. Bring the sauce to a simmer. Immediately ladle it over the pasta and serve it with the remaining ½ cup of grated cheese on the side.