Green Olive Linguine with Broccolini & Breadcrumbs

linguine tossed in a lemon butter sauce with charred broccolini, a green olive topping, and crispy breadcrumbs

servings: 4


  • ¼ lb fresh whole grain bread, cubed
  • olive oil, as needed
  • ½ lb broccolini, ends trimmed
  • kosher salt
  • ¾ lb linguine
  • 4 tbsp butter
  • 4 green onions, thinly sliced (white/light green & dark green sections separated)
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • freshly cracked black pepper
  • 1 (5 oz) jar green castelvetrano olives, drained + halved
  • 2 tbsp chives, minced
  • 1 tbsp lemon zest
  • ¼ cup fresh lemon juice
  • ¼ cup grated parmesan cheese, plus more for topping


  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the bread to a food processor and pulse until coarse crumbs form. Set aside. Add the broccolini and a big pinch of salt to the pot and blanch for 2 minutes, or until bright and tender. Transfer the broccolini to a large bowl of ice water for 1 minute (reserving the water in the pot). Transfer the broccolini to paper towels and let dry.
  2. Heat a 12” cast iron skillet over medium heat. Add enough olive oil to generously coat the bottom. Once hot, add the breadcrumbs. Toast until golden brown and crisp, stirring often. Transfer the breadcrumbs to a plate lined with paper towels. Season with a pinch of salt.
  3. Wipe out the skillet and add more olive oil over medium-high heat. Add the broccolini. Cook for a couple of minutes per side until slightly charred. Transfer to a cutting board and chop into smaller pieces.
  4. Meanwhile, bring the water in the pot back to a boil and drop in the linguine. Cook for 1 minute less than the package’s instructions, stirring often.
  5. Lower the skillet to medium heat. Add the butter and let it melt. Add the white/light green onions and garlic. Cook for a couple of minutes until fragrant. Season with salt and freshly cracked black pepper.
  6. Meanwhile, combine the olives, dark green onions, chives, lemon zest, and 3 tablespoons of olive oil in a small bowl and mix well. Set aside.
  7. Retrieve 1 cup of pasta water from the pot and add it to the skillet. Let simmer for 2 minutes. Drain the pasta when done and add it to the skillet, along with the lemon juice. Stir well to combine. Gradually sprinkle in the parmesan cheese, stirring the pasta continuously as it melts. Lastly, fold in the chopped broccolini. Taste the pasta and season with more salt if needed.
  8. Serve the pasta with the olive mixture, breadcrumbs, and a sprinkling of parmesan cheese over top.


Whenever creating a pasta sauce using pasta water as the base, I like to reserve a little extra water on the side before draining the pasta. If the sauce reduces too much and loses it’s silky-smooth quality, you can add a splash of this extra water as needed to loosen it back up.