This is one of those dishes I tossed together to use up some leftover ingredients I had on hand. It is simple, yet extremely flavorful. Can't beat that, right? Broccoli rabe is, unfortunately, another one of those vegetables too often overlooked or just unheard of. Broccoli rabe looks like a crossover between spinach and broccoli. I just love it! It has a strong, earthy flavor that differs from that of most other greens. If you've never tried broccoli rabe, here is your chance!
Broccoli Rabe and Pesto Pasta (serves 2):
1 cup blanched broccoli rabe*
2 tbsp. olive oil
2 large cloves garlic, minced
1 tsp. dried basil
1 tsp. dried oregano
1 tsp. fresh thyme
1/2 tsp. salt, or to taste
1/4 tsp. black pepper
1/4 tsp. crushed red pepper. or to taste
2 heaping tbsp. sour cream
1/4 cup pesto( you can use readymade pesto; i used leftover arugula pesto)
1/2 cup Swiss cheese, shredded
1/2 cup dry pasta, prepared according to package directions
*To blanch broccoli rabe, first wash it, and then trim it as needed. Then, place it in a pot of boiling water, cvoer the pot, and reduce the heat to medium-low. Let the broccoli rabe cook for about 2 minutes, and then shock it with cold water to stop the cooking.
Heat olive oil in a medium skillet. When hot, add garlic on medium heat. Cook for about 1-2 minutes or until the garlic starts to brown. Add the basil, oregano and thyme, and cook for another 1-2 minutes. Then add crushed red pepper, and cook for one more minute. Add the broccoli rabe, and mix well. Cook for 2-3 minutes, then season with salt and pepper. Cook for one more minute before turning off the heat.
Mix the hot pasta with sour cream, shredded cheese, pesto and hot broccoli rabe mixture until the cheese melts. Serve hot.