ceramic plate from Fifty One and Half
This green leafy vegetable is a staple in the Italian kitchen. It is called Rapini but it is better known in the U.S. as Broccoli Rabe. Italians love their bitter greens and this vegetable fits right in. It's in the mustard family and is like a turnip green with little broccoli florets. It's absolutely delicious. It goes well with a nice grilled steak. There are a number of ways to cook it, but I'm going to show you how to roast it til it's crispy.
When you buy broccoli rabe, it will be in a nice sized bunch and it will look like a lot, but it does cook down. I like to roast it on sheet pans but you can't crowd it - one large bunch should be divided up between two sheet pans so it crisps up well and doesn't just steam.
I like to infuse some oil first with some garlic and spices. Then I pour this flavorful oil over the broccoli rabe and toss it till all the leaves are coated. Roasting it for about 15 - 20 minutes or so crisps it up very nicely.
Roasted Broccoli Rabe
for a printable recipe click here
You need two sheet pans for this recipe to work - you don't want to crowd the broccoli rabe or it will steam instead of crisping.
1 bunch fresh rapini (broccoli rabe)
¼ cup Extra Virgin Olive Oil
2 whole garlic cloves
⅛ teaspoon red hot chili pepper
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
¼ teaspoon sea salt
Preheat the oven to 400° F. (If you have a convection oven, use the convection setting - it will crisp the greens up even better). Prepare two rimmed baking sheets by lining them with aluminum foil. Divide the broccoli rabe bunch up between the two pans.
In a small saucepan, heat the rest of the ingredients up over low heat for about 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. Do not let the garlic burn. Remove the garlic.
Pour the infused oil over the greens and toss well until they are lightly coated. Place in the oven and roast for about 10 minutes. Remove from the oven and toss well again. Return to the oven and roast for about 5 - 10 minutes more, until the leaves are really crisping up. Keep checking until it's done to your liking. I like a lot of the leaves to be super crisp - almost burnt a little. It's delicious.