My little one has been tugging me in all different directions. The latest has been to ride on his grandfather's tractor morning, noon and night. And if you tell him that he can't do as he pleases he won't hear of it. Literally.
This has left little time on my hands to put dinner on the table. Fortunately I have collected an arsenal of dishes that can be put together faster than loved ones can ask, "What's for dinner, honey?" Our latest favorite is garlic broccoli rabe pasta, a garlicky one pot vegetarian meal at its best.
As the pasta is boiling the broccoli rabe is added to the same pot in the final 3-4 minutes of pasta cooking for a quick blanch to mellow the bitterness. Once the pasta and broccoli are drained that same pot is used to toast the garlic in olive oil, making clean up a breeze and leaving more time for everyone to dabble in play.
Pasta with Garlicky Broccoli Rabe
From Gourmet, September 2006 via Smitten Kitchen
- 1 pound pasta, any shape
- 1 pound broccoli rabe, heavy stems removed, remaining stems and leaves cut into 1- to 2-inch sections
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 5 garlic cloves, peeled and minced or pressed
- 1/2 teaspoon red pepper flakes, or more or less to taste
- About 1 heaping teaspoon Kosher salt (or more to taste)
- Grated Parmesan or Romano cheese, to sprinkle on top (optional)
- Bring a huge pot of salted water to a boil, it should taste like the sea. Add pasta and 3-4 minutes before its cooking time is up, add the broccoli rabe. It will seem like too much for the water, but with a stir or two, the rabe should wilt and cook alongside the pasta. Drain rabe and pasta together and pour into serving bowl.
- In the same pot or a tiny one, heat the olive oil with the garlic, pepper flakes and Kosher salt over moderate heat, stirring frequently for 3 to 4 minutes, or until the garlic becomes lightly golden. Pour mixture over pasta and toss to evenly coat. Sprinkle with freshly grated cheese.