Friday, June 12, 2009

Gnocchi with Sausage and Broccoli Rabe

It's time to welcome another vegetable to your repertoire. Broccoli rabe appears in a lot of Italian dishes, but otherwise it's fairly unheard of. It's a leafy green studded with clusters of broccoli-esque florets. It's fairly bitter, but the bitterness goes away with blanching. Here it serves as a wonderful complement to golden gnocchi, spicy sausage, and sweet red bell pepper.

This is a great weeknight dish that comes together without too much fuss. It's a wonderful way to expose yourself and your family to something a little bit different without forcing anyone to venture too far from his comfort zone.

Gnocchi with Sausage and Broccoli Rabe
adapted from Rachael Ray's Big Orange Book
serves 3


1 package fresh gnocchi
1 bunch of broccoli rabe, stem ends trimmed, coarsely chopped
2 tablespoons EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
1 hot Italian turkey sausage link, casing removed
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 large garlic clove, minced or pressed
1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
zest and juice of 1/2 lemon


1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil and salt it. Cook the gnocchi according to package directions. Right before draining, reserve about 3/4 cups of cooking liquid.

2. While water for gnocchi is warming up, bring about 1 inch of water to a boil in a large, high sided skillet. Salt it and add the chopped broccoli rabe. Blanch for about 2-3 minutes, then drain and set aside. Return the skillet to medium-high heat and warm 1 tablespoon EVOO. Add the sausage and cook, breaking it up with a spoon or other utensil. Cook about 5 minutes, or until browned.

3. Add onion, garlic, red bell pepper, and pepper flakes to the skillet and cook for about 3 minutes, or until onions are starting ot get tender. Remove sausage and veggie mixture from skillet and reserve. Add remaining 1 tablespoon EVOO and heat. Add drained gnocchi to skillet and brown lightly for a couple of minutes.

4. Return sausage and veggies to the skillet and toss. Add reserved pasta cooking liquid and simmer for 1 to 2 minutes. Stir in lemon zest and juice. Serve.


1 comment:

  1. Looks great .............. will try this one.