Tuesday, January 01, 2008

A Recipe For The New Year

No, nothing to do with a resolution, this is actually a recipe. A simple little dish we put together over the weekend that was so good and satisfying we went back again this afternoon, and this time I brought my digital camera.

I guess I'd call this Pasta (Any Kind) With Broccoli Rabe and Sauteed Tomatoes. It takes about 30-45 minutes from start to finish and you will need:

1 pound box of dried pasta (any kind)
1 bunch of fresh broccoli rabe
2 pints small red tomatoes (cherry/grape variety - any small red tomato will work)
1/4 cup of extra virgin olive oil
1 small/medium-sized onion (about 1/2 cup chopped)
4 to 5 cloves garlic
Locatelli Romano cheese

1. Wash the tomatoes and slice them in half, lengthwise. Put aside.

2. Chop up the onion and the garlic into a fine/medium mince.

3. Put the olive oil into a relatively deep saute pan on medium heat. Gwen got me one of these for my last birthday and we've been very happy with it for everything from scrambled eggs in the morning to this kind of dish. Add the onions and garlic to the oil and saute for two to three minutes over medium heat. You are not looking to brown the onion/garlic, just to sweat them a little bit.

4. Add the sliced tomatoes to the pan and stir to create an even mixture. Season with salt, approximately 1 tsp. works for us, and leave on medium to medium-low heat, stirring occasionally. At this point it looks about like the photo below.

The tomatoes will need to cook like this for about a half hour, so the rest of the steps should be timed to end about 30 minutes after the tomatoes began to cook in the pan.

After just a few minutes they look like this:

When they are close to done, they get to look like this:

5. Bring a large pot of liberally-salted water to boil.

6. Cut about two inches off the bottom of the bunch of broccoli rabe and discard. Separate the remaining portion and rinse well with cold water.

7. Drop the cleaned broccoli rabe into the boiling water and blanch for two minutes.

8. Remove the broccoli rabe from the boiling water and immediately rinse in cold water to stop the cooking process. The greens should still have a little bit of a snap to them. Put aside.

9. Add the pasta to the boiling water. We love De Cecco pasta but more recently have been eating Barilla Plus in a nod to health, and it's very good. This dish seems to work well with hearty cuts like rigatoni, mezzi rigatoni, tortiglioni, penne rigate or even orecchiette.

10. Cook the pasta for exactly one minute less than the box recommends for "al dente," this is important.

11. Put the cooked broccoli rabe on your cutting board, bunched together, and cut across the bunch three or four times - you are not looking for any kind of fine chop on this, or even a medium chop, really just to avoid a large green mound of vegetation clumping together in the pan (and dish) once the cooked ingredients are mixed.

12. Right before you are ready to pull the pasta from the boiling water, add the broccoli rabe to the tomatoes - right in the pan. Add the cooked pasta and toss the ingredients until they are uniformly mixed. Turn off the heat. It should look something like this:

We like this dish with a little bit of Locatelli Romano cheese on top. You could also drizzle a little olive oil on top before serving, and add crushed red pepper flakes to taste. Here is the finished product, and my first attempt at food photography:

Enjoy in 2008! I know we will be.


Anonymous Anonymous said...


I ran across your blog and read the recipe. It looks amazing and now my stomach is growling :( Yes bored at the office this afternoon.

Thanks for the details on how to do this and the great pictures you took. Very colorful :) Keep up the good work!!

5:20 PM  
Blogger McMGrad89 said...

This looks wonderful. I bought the Barilla Plus on New Years thinking I would make a healthy pasta dish. As of today, it is still in the pantry. Today, I saw your blog. I now have no excuse. I will have to use it. Great pictures.

2:17 PM  
Blogger alpha dog said...

really enjoyed ur blog. I liked the subject and the way u presented was nice.
keep it up..!!!!

2:52 PM  
Blogger Aditya said...

Howdy mate!! Awesome blog. Can i link to this? Let me know

9:24 AM  
Blogger Dad said...

Absolutely on the link... feel free, and thanks for the comment.

4:21 PM  
Blogger The Mama of the House said...

That looks happy. Yes, the world is perfect.

11:06 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

this looks really good!

3:04 PM  
Blogger Kelly Jeanette Swift said...

I found your blog while surfing blogspot. This dish looks good. Thanks for the recipe. I'll have to try to make it, though no one in my family likes pasta dishes except me. And I love your pics. Can I link to your blog?

11:13 AM  
Blogger Dad said...

Of course, thank you.

11:22 AM  

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