Cooking with Karin

Friday, November 30, 2012

Little Ears with Broccoli Raab and White Beans

I have two favorite vegetables and they're both bitter with a peppery bite. Yep. I love broccoli raab (also known as rapini) and arugula.

I could eat them every day. (And I probably should!)

I've combined broccoli raab with pasta in a number of ways, most recently in a creamy lasagna for my column in The Augusta Chronicle. Here's the link: Sausage and Broccoli Raab Lasagna.

Most recently, I whipped up a quick and easy vegetarian pasta dish that hubs and I loved.

I used little artisan orcchiette, but you can use whatever pasta shape you like. Standard shells or penne would be great. Canned white beans bulked up the dish and I added a good bit of red pepper flakes for some heat.

Consider this dish for your next Meatless Monday. I know I'll be making it again soon!

Little Ears with Broccoli Raab and White Beans

1/2 pound orcchiette or other pasta
3 tablespoons olive oil
1 teaspoon minced garlic, about 1 large clove
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or to taste
1 bunch broccoli raab, washed, tough stems removed and then cut into 2-inch pieces
Salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1 can white beans (15 or 16 ounces), rinsed and drained
Freshly grated Parmesan cheese

Bring a large pot of  salted water to a boil and cook pasta according to package directions for al dente.

While you're waiting on the pasta, heat the olive oil in a large saute pan with a tight-fitting lid over medium-high heat. Add the garlic and red pepper flakes and cook for 1 minute. Add the broccoli raab and stir to coat with the garlic and oil. Season with salt and pepper and cover and cook for a few minutes, stirring occasionally, until tender.

Remove 1/4 cup of the pasta water from the pot before draining the pasta. Add the pasta, white beans and pasta water to the broccoli raab and cook, stirring, for a few minutes, until the white beans are heated through.

Serve, sprinkling each serving with Parmesan cheese.

Makes 4 servings.