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The Complete Vegan Kitchen by Jannequin Bennett
While broccoli looks like a little tree, broccoli rabe looks more like a shrub, with a slender stalk, buds on the verge of flowering, and copious leaves. While broccoli stems are tough and should be peeled, broccoli rabe stems are usually tender. Just cut off the dry base of the stalk. Like many popular Italian vegetables, broccoli rabe has a pleasant bitter taste and pairs well with slightly sweet ingredients such as nuts, sun-dried tomatoes, extra virgin olive oil, and raisins. Like its more muscular cousin, broccoli rabe packs a mighty nutritional wallop.
     Though a little pricey at times, broccoli rabe is available year-round. It is at its peak in late fall through early spring.
Makes 2 to 3 servings.


• 2 tablespoons thinly sliced sun-dried tomatoes (use 1/4 cup if oil packed)
• 2 teaspoons oil
• 1 teaspoon minced garlic
• 1/8 teaspoon red pepper flakes
• 2 bunches broccoli rabe, cut into 2-inch pieces
• 2 tablespoons pine nuts, toasted
• 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil
• Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper


Cover the sun-dried tomatoes with boiling water in a very small bowl or custard cup. Let stand for 10 minutes, drain, and reserve. (If using oil-packed tomatoes, omit this step.)

Heat the oil in a wide skillet over medium heat. Add the garlic and pepper flakes and saute until the garlic is fragrant, about 40 seconds. Add the broccoli rabe and cook until it turns a brilliant green. If the garlic begins to brown, add a few ounces of water to the pan. Add the pine nuts, tomatoes, olive oil, salt, and pepper and toss to mix thoroughly. Serve immediately or reserve in a warm oven for up to 20 minutes.


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