Sauteed Rapini with Potatoes

Photo by Christopher Hirsheimer for Julia della Croce's Italian Home Cooking (Kyle Books, 2010) via her blog.  My version adds onions and red pepper flakes.

The September 9 farm share from Glade Road Growing is slated to include: broccoli raab (AKA rapini, rabe, cima di rapa or broccoli di rapa, head lettuce, radishes, tomatoes, dill, and yellow onions.

Rapini is in the brassica family, but while broccoli is most closely related to cabbage and cauliflower, this green, leafy, pungent vegetable is more closely related to turnips and Chinese cabbage.  It can be steamed, sauteed, boiled in a soup, made into a pesto or used as a topping for pizza with olives.  It's good combined with white beans, chickpeas, chicken or sausage.

My favorite way to cook it is to steam it briefly to remove some of the bitterness and tenderize the stalks and then to saute it extra virgin olive oil with garlic, chopped onions, red pepper flakes with Yukon gold or red potatoes.

Serves 6

1. Slice 2-3  unpeeled Yukon gold or red potatoes in (1/2 #) into 1/2 inch thick slices.
2.  Peel the skin from the tough lower stalks of the rapini, using a paring knife or vegetable peeler, unless the stems are very slender--then leave unpeeled. Cut the stems crosswise into 1 1/2- to 3-inch lengths.
3.  Chop one small yellow onion.
4.  Smash and peel 3 cloves of garlic
5.  Steam the potatoes and then the rapini separately until they are tender, but not mushy,
6. In a skillet large enough to accommodate all the veggies, coat with extra virgin olive oil and heat until a drop of water added to the skillet beads and sizzles.  Saute onions until translucent with 1/8 tsp red pepper flakes.  Add garlic and cook until softened.  Transfer to a bowl.
7.  Raise the heat to medium-high, re-oil pan, if necessary and add potatoes and sauté until they are golden and crisp all over, about 12 minutes. Transfer potatoes to a serving bowl or platter.
8.  Re-oil pan and add the rapini and the garlic cloves. Sauté until coated with the olive oil and heated through, about 3 minutes.  If the rapini seems a bit dry, you can add a a few spoons of water.  Add to the potatoes and toss and serve immediate.y.