Putnam’s Sauteed Broccoli Raab with Chick Peas

Earlier this year, I had the pleasure of befriending a new coworker, Putnam, who was seated next to my cube for me to mentor. I know, I know. Me? A mentor? Nurturing personality? Deep down inside…I gots it…honest! At any rate, Putnam turned out to be an exceptional phone jockey due to his exceptional skill and a little of my tutelage.

Chris, in turn, taught me something equally amazing…how to make an exceptional broccoli raab. For those of you who’ve never tried it, I highly recommend that you give it a try. Broccoli raab, or rabe, or rapini as it is sometimes called, is a leafy vegetable, sporting very small “broccoli like” heads which are also edible. It has a bitter, nutty, almost pungent taste to it or, as Alex calls it, aggressively bitter. It’s similar in appearance to chinese broccoli, but is not nearly as sweet.

Now, I have been a huge fan of broccoli raab since I first had it on a Primo’s pork sandwich back in the day. Something about its sweet bitterness made my heart sing! Chris came in one day and had me sample his broccoli raab dish…sauteed broccoli raab with chick peas. It was simple and yet the mixture of chick peas and broccoli raab was perfect. My friends, it was downright amazing.

Putnam’s Sauteed Broccoli Raab with Chick Peas

1 bunch broccoli raab
3 large garlic cloves, minced
1/3 cup extra-virgin olive oil
1 can chick peas, drained
1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes
2 tablespoons olive oil

Salt to taste

Preparation

Prepare a large 6-8 quart pot of salted boiling water. Cut off and discard 1 inch from stem ends of broccoli raab and then slice into 2″ lengths. Cook broccoli raab, uncovered, in boiling salted water until just tender, about 3 minutes, transferring with a slotted spoon to a large bowl of ice and cold water to stop cooking. Drain well in a colander.

In a large skillet, heat olive oil over medium high heat and saute garlic until golden, about 2-3 minutes. Add in chick peas and red pepper flakes and saute for another minute. Add in broccoli raab and cook, tossing to coat with oil and thoroughly mixing with chick peas. Continue cooking until heated through, about 3-5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

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~ by tastydesu on December 14, 2010.

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