Broccoli rabe often gets passed over because people don’t know what to do with it. We think of it as a sexier alternative to broccoli—darker and a little bitter. It’s available nearly year-round and, like its cruciferous cousins, can be roasted, steamed, braised, or simply sautéed, as it is here.
This recipe was featured as part of our Christmas Day Feast, Italian Style menu.
- 1Prepare an ice water bath by filling a bowl halfway with ice and water; set aside. Fill a large pot with heavily salted water and bring to a boil over high heat. Cook the broccoli rabe until the stalks are just tender when pierced with a knife, about 2 minutes.
- 2Drain the broccoli rabe and place in the ice water bath until cool. Remove, shake off excess water, pat dry with paper towels, and set aside. (If not cooking immediately, store in the refrigerator in a resealable plastic bag lined with paper towels for up to 1 day.)
- 3Place a large frying pan over medium-high heat and add the oil. When it shimmers, add the shallots and cook until golden, about 3 minutes.
- 4Add the red pepper flakes and season with salt and pepper. Add the reserved broccoli rabe and cook, stirring occasionally, until heated through, about 5 minutes. Taste, adjust the seasoning as needed, and serve.
Beverage pairing: A red wine from Tuscany will be delicious with this dish. A Chianti would do the trick, but for something a bit more unusual, try a Rosso di Montalcino (made from Sangiovese), like the 2004 Casisano Colombaio Rosso di Montalcino.