Rigatoni with Artichokes, Garlic, and Olives

I have always found artichokes a little bit like Marmite—you love them or you hate them! In my case, I absolutely adore them. If you have never tried them, please have a go at this pasta dish—you won’t be disappointed.

Never ever buy artichokes that are preserved in brine because they aren’t worth eating.–Gino D’Acampo

LC Simple Is As Pasta Does Note

Simple is as simple does…or, in this case, simple is as pasta does, given how a handful of ingredients can come together so well. Subtly, but well. What that means is that each ingredient essentially and effectively has the potential to throw the delicate balance out of wonk if not carefully chosen. Although it’s tweakable to your palate’s content, what we find what works best here are artichokes tinned straight-up in oil, no potpourri-like dried herbs included. Err on the side of using less pasta so as to maximize the lovely sauce. And if you have everything in your pantry except that orange, don’t hesitate to use lemon in its place, as we hear it works without anything seeming amiss. And if you like things with a little zing, shave a little Parmigiano-Reggiano over the pasta at the end. We’re also wondering how some nice, plump, mild Cerignolas would be in place of Kalamatas, but that will have to wait for another day.

Rigatoni with Artichokes, Garlic, and Olives Recipe

  • Quick Glance
  • 20 M
  • 30 M
  • Serves 4

Ingredients

  • 12 to 16 ounces rigatoni
  • 2 tablespoons salted butter
  • 6 tablespoons olive oil
  • 2 garlic cloves, peeled and finely chopped
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped fresh rosemary
  • 1/2 cup pitted Kalamata olives, halved
  • 6 artichoke hearts in oil, drained and cut into quarters
  • 1/3 cup plus 1 tablespoon dry white wine
  • Finely grated zest of 1/2 orange (or, if you prefer, the zest of a small lemon)
  • Salt and freshly cracked black pepper to taste
  • Parmigiano-Reggiano (optional)

Directions

  • 1. Cook the pasta in a large pot of boiling salted water until al dente.
  • 2. Meanwhile, in a large skillet or wok, melt the butter in the pool of oil. Add the garlic, rosemary, olives, and artichokes and sauté over medium heat for 3 minutes, stirring occasionally with a wooden spoon. Pour in the wine and cook until the liquid all but evaporates, or rather reduces quite a lot, about 2 minutes.
  • 3. Add the orange zest to the artichoke concoction, season quite generously with the salt and pepper, and toss. Remove from the heat.
  • 4. Drain the pasta and add to the artichoke mixture. Place the pan over medium-high heat and toss again for 30 seconds or so to evenly coat the pasta. Taste and, if desired, season with more pepper. Pile the pasta on plates, spooning any artichoke mixture that remains in the skillet over the top. Shave some Parmigiano-Reggiano over the pasta, if you please.
Hungry for more? Chow down on these:

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Susan Bingaman

May 08, 2012

Fabulous! If you stay organized, the rigatoni in all its olive-y, garlic-y, rosemary-y goodness will be on the table in less than 30 minutes. Be sure to season well with sea salt and freshly cracked black pepper. And do add the orange zest, as it’s delicious.

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Sita Krishnaswamy

May 08, 2012

If you can boil water and cook pasta then you can surely make this recipe. Made with simple ingredients, it is full of flavor . The rosemary and citrus (orange or lemon) zest just gives the pasta the wonderful oomph. It is perfect for a weeknight meal or midnight snack attack or really any meal any time of day.

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Melissa Maedgen

May 08, 2012

The orange zest and rosemary are really the key here. These flavors go so well with the artichokes and olives and turn what would otherwise be a very plain dish into something special. The hardest part about this recipe is finding artichokes packed in oil. What you are looking for here are not the “marinated” artichokes that are so common in supermarkets, but unseasoned, plain artichokes. Mine were packed in sunflower oil. Once your artichoke quest is completed, this recipe makes a very simple and easy pasta dish that’s greater than the sum of its parts.

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Natalie Reebel

May 08, 2012

This was a very nice dish. It’s light and refreshing, but also very satisfying. I was able to pick up both the olives and the artichokes at my local grocery store on the olive bar. This was nice because I could purchase exactly what I needed and not have mostly empty jars sitting in my fridge. This was easy to put together, which made it a perfect meal for a busy weeknight. The spice and tang was nice, and the artichokes added just the right balance. With a touch of Parmesan, this dish is perfect. A fabulous go-to recipe when you need something quick and want something delicious.

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Sofia Reino

May 08, 2012

I must say this pasta dish surprised me. The end result was much better than expected, with the perfect amount of “sauce,” a nice taste of rosemary, and slight tanginess of the orange zest and the olives. I can also see this this being a beautiful cold pasta dish. Would be amazing with some prosciutto.

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Julie T.

May 08, 2012

A deliciously light and easy busy night’s dinner option. I used my favorite pinot grigio and the zest of a Valencia orange and loved it! For my palate, artichokes can be a bit mild, so I incorporated one tablespoon of the artichoke oil and reduced the butter to one tablespoon, and it worked out very well. Yummy all the way!

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Sandy Hill

May 08, 2012

A perfect dish for a weeknight! We loved the salty olives and artichokes combined with the herbs and pasta. This was almost a “pantry meal” and was so fast to put together. It was light but very satisfying. I zested a lemon instead of the half orange and we liked that combination with the herbs and white wine reduction. I’ll keep this recipe around for an easy spring and summer dinner! I may add grilled shrimp next time, if we’re feeling the need for some protein with our pasta.

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Anna Scott

May 08, 2012

What a nice springtime pasta! (And so very Italian!) I really enjoyed the bright citrus taste of the orange zest. That really worked well with the artichokes and saltiness of the olives. I would love to add a little Italian parsley to add a little green color to the pasta before serving, as well as a grating of Parmesan cheese for a bit of a bite before serving as well. Overall, this was very tasty and would love to make it again, maybe next time with whole-wheat pasta.

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Marilee Johnson

May 08, 2012

This was a really simple and quick recipe. The olives, artichokes, and garlic were a delicious blend of ingredients. I didn’t have salted butter and was glad I didn’t. It did not need any more salt. I liked the sauce a lot and would have liked to have more of it, so I would decrease the pasta to 12 to 14 ounces. The wine and rosemary brought a finished taste to it. All in all it was a winner! I loved it!

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Carrie S.

May 08, 2012

My sweetheart’s pasta repertoire is limited to pasta with either marinara, pesto, and/or cheese on it. I’ve been looking for some more options that would be pantry-friendly and not too intimidating for a beginner to make. I appreciate that most of the ingredients in the recipe are items that can be found in a pantry and stored for a while. The recipe has great flavor from the wine, the salty olives, and the rosemary. The artichoke hearts seemed to break apart more than I anticipated, but I liked that this contributed to the artichokes being in every bite. I ended up cutting the olives into quarters because the ones that I had seemed a little large and would have resulted in too much olive flavor in a single bite. We tried this recipe with and without the orange zest and preferred it without so the other flavors stood out more. I think less oil/butter is possible. Seasoning at the end with salt and pepper helps pull this entire recipe together.

Testers Choice
Elsa M. Jacobson

May 08, 2012

Perfetto! Quick–the timing is correct; easy–no hard to find ingredients or complicated instructions; adaptable–can be served either as an entrée or as a side. And though the recipe states to serve the pasta immediately, I think this would make a lovely lunchbox treat, perhaps with a side salad or simple steamed broccoli, green beans, or spinach, any of which would nicely complement the pasta and add nice green color to the plate.
Made as described, the dish is delicious, but something of color would perk up the overall presentation; as it is, only the chopped fresh rosemary adds a bit of green to the otherwise primarily beige dish.It did look like a lot of rosemary to me, but when I added it, it provided just the right taste and visual appeal. I opted out of the optional zest and was glad I did; the perfection of the dish would not have been improved upon with its inclusion. I lightly salted, due to the salty olives, and generously peppered. I found only a light salting to be necessary even though I used unsalted butter. As a postscript, I don’t really feel artichokes are akin to Marmite: I think Marmite is much more controversial and much less universally loved. Regardless, the artichokes are great in this dish, and, indeed, you won’t be disappointed.

Testers Choice
Jo Ann Brown

May 08, 2012

I am a shopper. Some people like to shop for shoes- I shop for food and provisions. During hours that I relish as my own you will
 find me at some of Brooklyn and Manhattan’s great markets. At one such place, there are aisles upon aisles of wonderful, imported, Italian preserved
vegetables and olives. This recipe is a wonderful use for those jarred delicacies. Since the ingredient list is sparse, a jar of good long-stem Roman artichokes in oil seems less a splurge. This pasta is quick and easy and will be immediately referenced the next time I’m perusing those aisles. I served the finished pasta with Chicken Milanese and the dinner was a huge, huge hit at our house. Testing tip: if you cannot find hearts in oil, use frozen hearts, defrosted and very, very well drained. Pack the hearts into a container with extra-virgin olive oil (enough to coat–they don’t need to swim in oil) along with a little thyme and oregano if you want, salt and pepper. Let them marinate one day in the fridge to use in this yummy recipe. They will keep for four days in the refrigerator.

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Jenna Helwig

May 08, 2012

Yum! This pasta dish was both speedy and delicious. Once your water is boiling you’ll be finished in the time it takes for your pasta to cook. At first I thought there might not be enough olives and artichokes to make for a flavorful dish, but the balance was perfect. Since I didn’t have salted butter, I added 1/4 teaspoon of salt to the butter and oil. I skipped the orange zest and might use lemon next time. As a final touch I 
sprinkled the dish with some grated Parmigiano.

Testers Choice
M.K. Morgan

May 08, 2012

I am a fan of artichokes almost any way. This is a quick and easy way to enjoy them. I needed less time than 30 minutes.
Next time, I would cut up the artichokes into pieces less than the quarters so that parts would find their way into the tubes of the rigatoni.

Testers Choice
Carol Anne Grady

May 08, 2012

This is an elegant but easy pasta dish to put together. The orange zest and artichokes are an unusual addition which both work well, and next time I’d add a little more rosemary to help it keep pace with the other strong flavors.

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