St. Patrick’s Day & broccoli rabe pasta recipe 

First of all let’s state the obvious, Happy St. Patrick’s day y’all. Yeah I just used “y’all” I don’t know why, it’s not in my normal vocabulary. Friday’s got me feeling groovy. I’m blasting Blondie and Fleetwood Mac all day today.


I recently found out that I have major Irish roots in my bloodline on my birth father’s side of the family. So I felt it was appropriate to make a post today and in honor of the holiday I will share with you a recipe with GREEN in it. Italian recipe though, (sorry Irish fam) I will have to learn more about Irish cuisine for future recipes. The particular GREEN veg I’m showcasing today is… broccoli rabe!

‘Insert cheers from an audience’

I have a serious crush on all green vegetables. Collards, kale, spinach, broccoli, zucchini, green beans, I’ll eat them all! This recipe is not from Tuscany but it is a typical recipe from Puglia (southern Italy) but they use a different type of pasta called “orrechiete” which are little round flat circle pasta that are kind of curved to make them look like little ears, hence the name orrechite which literally means “little ears.” Since I’m not using that kind of pasta I’m basically a disgrace to anyone from Puglia. (I just used what I had) this recipe is still deliziosa though even if I used ‘insalatonde‘ instead. Oh the SHAME!

Pasta con le cime di rapa

Serving size: 2

4 cups insalatonde pasta

1/4 cup olive oil

2 anchovies  (or I Tbs anchoive paste)

2 peperoncini

2 whole garlic cloves

1 bushel of broccoli rape finely chopped (I’d say, a good two or three cups)

Parmigiano reggiano

Okay so, start out with one deep sided pan on one burner and one pot full of water and turn THE HEAT TO MEDIUM! Excuse my shouting, I’m just excited. Infuse the olive oil with two whole garlic cloves along with two small peperoncini peppers, one if spicy isn’t your thing. You can also use red pepper flakes. Take your anchovies and grind them up into a paste and mix together with the olive oil in the pan and stir together for a few minutes until you think the ingredients are well infused into the oil, then add your chopped broccoli rape, flower heads and all. Don’t worry if you don’t like anchoives, you won’t taste them very much but it just adds the most perfect salty flavor. Trust me! 

Here’s a photo of trulli houses that are a typical house in Puglia. I went there with my grandma, dad and brother on an Italian cruise two years ago.

Sauté until the greens become wilted. Once the water in the pot has boiled, add your salt and “butta la pasta!” (Pour the pasta in) Drain the pasta but reserve a cup or two of pasta water just in case your sauce becomes too dry. Remember to take the pasta out 3 minutes before the time suggested! Dump the pasta into the broccoli rabe yumminess and cook for another 3 minutes while stirring it around to make sure the pasta soaks in the flavors of the sauce. This is an Italian must! The pasta will continue to cook in the sauce and it will absorb all the flavors, therefore making it taste better. Add some pasta water if it looks too dry. Taste one to see if it’s cooked to your liking. Add a drizzle of extra virgin olive oil and some freshly grated Parmesan on top because no dignified Italian uses kraft from a plastic shaker, come on now! ‘disapproving Italian gesture’

Enjoy and may the luck of the Irish be with you!

“SLÁINTE!” is how you say “cheers!” in Irish Gaelic and this dish is somewhat spicy and would totally be accetable to be served with a nice amber beer.



Write a comment