Dinner Tonight: Fregola with Artichokes, Feta, Almonds, and Herbs
Fregola is a hard-to-find pasta that's similar to cous cous (Israeli cous cous is a fine replacement if you can't find fregola), but larger, chewier, and toasted, which gives it a nutty quality. I fell in love with the stuff after trying it at Otto in New York, and was reminded again when I came across this recipe on the New York Times website.
This recipe makes a fine side dish to, say, roasted fish, but it's also filling and balanced on its own. The interesting technique here is that the artichokes are simmered in a broth of water, garlic, chile flakes, and olive oil, and then this liquid is used to cook the fregola. The result is the artichoke's fine flavor infused throughout, while salty, creamy feta binds it together and toasted slivers of almond add crunch.