Fennel and Artichoke Fregola with Herb Butter Recipe

Stirring in a lemon, caper, and herb compound butter brightens and elevates this simple pasta.
October 21, 2020, 11:00am
Photo by Farideh Sadeghin

Serves 4
Prep time: 15 minutes
Total time: 45 minutes


8 tablespoons|4 ounces|115 grams unsalted butter, at room temperature  
2 tablespoons|¼ ounce|10 grams minced fresh herbs (parsley, cilantro, basil, or a combination)
1 tablespoon drained and finely chopped capers
½ teaspoon kosher salt, plus more to taste
¼ teaspoon freshly ground black pepper, plus more to taste
2 lemons
1 cup|165 grams fregola
2 tablespoons olive oil 
12 ounces|340 grams canned or frozen artichokes, drained if canned, defrosted if frozen, and halved  
2 medium shallots, diced 
1 medium head fennel, diced, fronds reserved
⅓ cup|65 grams golden raisins 
¼ cup|35 grams toasted pine nuts


  1. In a medium bowl, mix together the butter, herbs, capers, salt, and pepper. Zest in half of one of the lemons and squeeze in 2 teaspoons juice. Stir to combine, then transfer to a piece of plastic wrap. Form the butter into a log and wrap tightly. Chill for at least 2 hours.
  2. Bring a small saucepan of generously salted water to a boil. Add the fregola and cook until al dente, 11 minutes. Drain and reserve.
  3. Heat the olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high. Add the artichokes, shallots, and fennel and cook until golden, 8 to 10 minutes. Toss in the reserved fregola, the raisins, and pine nuts. Zest in the remaining lemon and squeeze in all of its juice, then season with salt and pepper. Toss to combine, then divide among plates. Serve each with a slice of herb-caper butter on top and garnish with the reserved fennel fronds.

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