The broccoli raab (broccoli rabe, rapini) at my work was ready to harvest last week, and luckily there were enough extras to send me home with some! Broccoli raab is a vegetable consisting of edible stalks of dark leafy greens with a few broccoli-shaped flowers. However, despite its name and appearance, this vegetable happens to be a close relative of the turnip family rather than broccoli, with a pungent taste much more similar to a vegetable such as mustard greens than that of broccoli.
High in vitamins A, C, K, and potassium, broccoli raab makes one nutritious and delicious garden-fresh side dish, and I couldn’t wait to get it cooked up and on my plate.
After being so satisfied with the lamb’s quarter saute I had made the previous day, I really wanted to recreate something similar with the broccoli raab. Of course the result would taste much different, considering broccoli raab has a rather strong, slightly bitter flavor while lamb’s quarter has a mild, spinach-like taste, but the cooking method I would use would be similar and would end up producing an equally as satisfying result.
Just my style, the following recipe is really rather simple. The intense flavor of broccoli raab is not for everyone, but if you’re a fan of veggies like dandelion greens, mustard greens, and other bitter-flavored vegetables, than this one’s definitely for you. Even if you’re not a huge fan of bitter, give it a try. The olive oil and sauteed garlic help to sweeten this dish up and pair perfectly with the broccoli raab. Enjoy.
Sauteed Broccoli Raab
- 1 1/2- 2 lb. broccoli raab
- 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil
- 4 garlic cloves, minced
- Salt and pepper, to taste
- 2 lemon wedges
- Parmesan, optional
Cut off any tough ends of the broccoli raab, about one inch off the stems. Chop broccoli raab, including the leaves, flowers and stems, into approximately two-inch pieces. Prepare steamer basket in large pan and steam broccoli raab for 4-5 minutes, until just tender but still firm. Remove from pan. Heat olive oil in saute pan. Add garlic and saute until brown. Add steamed broccoli raab and salt and pepper to taste, and saute 5-7 minutes, or until completely tender. Lightly squeeze lemon juice and sprinkle parmesan on top, if desired.