Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Another Simple Supper - Rapini and Pasta

So many things to do during the holiday season, including shoveling our first snowfall of the season today. Here is one easy way to keep fueled with delicious and healthy foods, including a relative of kale called rapini, that are a snap to make for supper.

I purchased a large bunch of fresh, locally grown rapini (sometimes called broccolini) at our local farmers market this morning grown by Jonathan and Karlene Goetz of Riga, MI, in their hoop houses. I always look but usually pass by the tiny bunch of rapini at the grocery store, shipped from California, that sells for $3.99, but this enormous bunch was only $2.00. Karlene assured me that they would be showing up every week during the winter, and I assured her that I was a "regular" and would also show up to purchase fresh greens all winter long. Now that is a relationship that is truly "Made in Michigan!"

(Photo: Rapini, also known as broccolini)

• 6-8 ounces of whole wheat pasta (made by a local company called Pastabilities)
• 1/2 large bunch rapini, washed and cut into pieces (about 4 cups fresh)
• 3-4 roasted tomato halves (frozen last fall, thawed just a bit and cut into small pieces - canned, drained tomato pieces will also do here, saving the juice for something else)
• 1 small stalk of fresh rosemary - snip the leaves off
• 2 'ice cubes' of garlic scape pesto, thawed (my husband makes this recipe and freezes it for use all winter - any pesto will do)

1) steam the rapini for just a few minutes using a steamer basket - do not overcook
2) cook pasta until still al dente, drain well
3) combine cooked pasta in large serving bowl with pesto, tomato pieces, rapini, and rosemary leaves
4) toss to distribute all ingredients

Serve with additional freshly grated hard cheese (not really necessary), fresh crusty bread, and a salad, if desired. Also very good and filling all by itself. These amounts made enough for 2 very hearty servings with one serving left over for lunch tomorrow, which will be very tasty to eat either warmed up or chilled.

(Photo: Rapini and Pasta - the only ingredient I cannot see is the fresh rosemary leaves)

Where kale and delicious relatives like rapini are more than decoration on my plate!

Diana Dyer, MS, RD


wendy said...

I make a version of Kale/Whole Wheat Fettuccine too. I use tiny slices of lemon (sauteed with garlic), some red pepper flake, and toasted walnuts.

I also totally LOVE the Al Dente Whole Wheat Fettuccine (which cooks in only 3-4 minutes and tastes like I made it myself). It's also a local company. Give it a whirl!

wendy said...

I cook the kale for a minute or so before I throw in the pasta, by the way, then save some of the pasta water for the finishing with the lemons, garlic and red pepper flake. Kalamata olives and some nice Reggiano also are great with this dish.

Anonymous said...

It's nice to see a shout out to rapini...I grew a whole bunch in my garden and it was really good. Very easy to grow!