Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe

September/October 1995

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Lots of chopped broccoli rabe, fresh garlic, olive oil and a touch of crushed red pepper is a simple sauce for orecchiette.

Orecchiette with Broccoli Rabe

Makes: 6 servings

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  • 2 pounds broccoli rabe
  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 4 cloves garlic, very finely chopped
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1 pound whole-wheat orecchiette, or other small sturdy pasta


  1. Trim broccoli rabe, removing any stems thicker than a pencil. You should have about 1 1/2 pounds.
  2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Blanch the broccoli rabe, in two batches if necessary, just until tender, 3 to 4 minutes. (Reserve the water to cook the pasta.) Transfer the broccoli rabe with tongs to a sieve and run under cold water to stop the cooking. Drain well, then coarsely chop.
  3. Heat 2 tablespoons oil in a large skillet over medium-low heat. Add garlic and cook until the garlic is fragrant and lightly colored, about 3 minutes. Add coarsely and cook about 30 seconds. Add the chopped broccoli rabe, season with salt and toss to coat with the seasonings. Cook, stirring, until heated through, about 3 minutes. Keep warm.
  4. Cook orecchiette in the same water used to blanch the broccoli rabe until just tender, 8 to 10 minutes or according to package directions. Drain. Transfer to a warm bowl. Add the remaining 1 tablespoon oil and toss to coat. Add the broccoli rabe mixture and toss again. Serve immediately on warm plates.


Per serving: 363 calories; 7 g fat (1 g sat, 5 g mono); 0 mg cholesterol; 64 g carbohydrates; 0 g added sugars; 13 g protein; 7 g fiber; 113 mg sodium; 10 mg potassium.

Nutrition Bonus: Vitamin C (232% daily value), Vitamin A (196% dv).

Carbohydrate Servings: 4

Exchanges: 4 starch, 2 vegetable, 1 fat

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