Cavolo Nero And Black Garlic Pasta

Cavolo Nero And Black Garlic Pasta

Back at the start of this year, I was looking for recipes featuring cavolo nero. I came across a dish that I felt was perfect for summer because of the wonderful touch that lemon zest makes to this dish. So if you can find cavolo nero – perhaps late summer – I recommend this as a great summery pasta dish. The addition of the ricotta and chilli flakes added another dimension that left us feeling fully satisfied and charmed by this recipe.


180g casarecce pasta (or any dried pasta you prefer)
200g pack cavolo nero
1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 lemon, zest and juice
20g finely grated Parmigiano Reggiano
5 cloves Black Garlic, mashed
4 tbsp ricotta
Chilli flakes, to taste
2 sprigs lemon thyme 


Cook the pasta in a large pan of salted boiling water according to the pack instructions.

Meanwhile, remove the stalks from the cavolo nero and roughly shred the leaves. Add to the pasta for the final minute of cooking. Reserve a mugful of the pasta cooking water, then drain well.

Tip the pasta and cavolo nero back into the pan and add the olive oil, lemon juice and zest, Parmigiano Reggiano and black garlic. Stir together, adding a little of the cooking water, until combined. Season to taste.

Divide between two bowls, topping each with half the ricotta then scatter over a few chilli flakes to taste and the stripped leaves of lemon thyme. 

We eat so much past, so to have found a recipe that is a little different from our normal – tomato, olives, garlic or mascarpone affair is great. As I mentioned above, the lemon zing made it feel ideal for summery pasta dinners.

5 thoughts on “Cavolo Nero And Black Garlic Pasta

    1. Cavolo nero is a leafy green, perhaps most similar to kale than anything else I can think of. It is quite dark green and I find the leaves are quite tough. You have to cook it for longer than spinach for example. It has a lot more texture than spinach. I have seen some recipes that say to use the stalk, but mostly recipes say to discard it.
      In the winter months I see a lot of cavolo nero recipes and I like to use them. But generally speaking, cavolo nero is one of those veggies you want hidden by lots of other delicious flavourings.
      The BBC website has a page of recipes featuring cavolo nero:

      Liked by 1 person

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