My husband just about died he loved this meal so much. I'm not kidding, I've never heard him gush about a meal we've made as much as this one. I really liked it too, it's very light tasting and easy to make. It think Giada uses Broccolini, but we only saw broccoli at our grocery store and it tasted great. This is the kind of recipe you could really get creative with, substituting asparagus for broccoli, or turkey sausage for pork, you get the idea.
salt 2 bunches broccoli 12 ounces (ish - ie a box) of penne pasta 3 tablespoons olive oil 1 pound spicy pork sausage, casing removed 3 garlic cloves, minced pinch crushed red pepper flakes 1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese 1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
Blanch the broccoli in a large pot of boiling salted water for 2 minutes. Remove broccoli from the pot (reserve all of the cooking liquid) and immerse in a bowl of ice water. Bring the reserved cooking liquid back to a boil and cook the penne in that water until tender but still firm to the bite (see box for time, around 10 minutes). Drain the pasta, reserving 1 cup of the cooking liquid.
Meanwhile, in a large skillet, heat the olive oil over medium heat. Add the sausage and cook, breaking it up with spoon, until browned and juices form, about 8 minutes. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and saute until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broccoli and toss to coat. Add the penne and enough reserved cooking liquid to moisten. Stir in the Parmesan cheese, salt (to taste) and pepper.