Authentic Orecchiette with Cime di Rapa (Broccoli Rabe)

This week we will show you how to prepare one of the most traditional and popular pasta dish from the southern Italian cuisine: the Orecchiette con le cime di rapa (orecchiette with broccoli rabe).

The broccoli rabe is a bitter green vegetable that grows in autumn-winter season in Italy. But, even though it’s not a typical Danish product, we easily found it in few greengrocers (SuperBrugsen and Meny), and that’s the reason why we decided to prepare this recipe. (See the picture below if you are in doubt on how to recognize the broccoli rabe).

With great surprise, we found also the dry orecchiette pasta (Rummo brand) in SuperBrugsen, Irma and Meny shops, but if you would like to make the fresh ones by yourself, follow the instructions below!


If you are organizing a romantic stay with your beloved, we would suggest to book a few nights at one of the most typical and  charming houses in Puglia (Apulia-Italy), called Trullo. And while you are there, don’t miss the most tasteful Orecchiette with cime di rapa of Ostuni at Osteria del tempo perso!

INGREDIENTS for 2 servings:

200 gr of dry orecchiette ( RUMMO brand) or other small-size pasta like penne
250 gr of broccoli rabe
1 garlic clove
3 tbs extra virgin olive oil
two anchovy fillets in oil


Pour some water in a pot and bring to boil. Clean the broccoli rabe, cutting off the hardest parts, then chop them roughly and place them, when the water is boiling, in the pot with salt.  After 10 minutes add (same pot!) the orecchiette. In a large pan heat 2-3 tbsp of extra virgin olive oil, add the garlic and the anchovies and let cook for a few minutes while breaking the anchovies with a wooden spoon (until they sort of melt). Drain the pasta and the broccoli rabe, put them in the large pan with the anchovies sauce and gently mix. To taste, you can add chopped chilli peppers to the anchovies sauce.

How to make home-made fresh orecchiette:

INGREDIENTS for 2 servings:
150 gr durum wheat flour or semolina flour
50 gr wholemeal flour
150 gr warm water

Pour the flour in a bowl or on a wooden surface, putting the water in the middle, and very gradually mixing in the flour with your fingers. Remember to use warm water, it helps to develop the gluten and make the dough more elastic.

Knead until the dough is smooth (about 10 minutes); if the dough still crumbles, just wet your hands and continue kneading.

Cut the dough in small portions and roll each portions into long cylinders of 1 cm diameter; the dough dries quickly,  so keep it covered with a towel or plastic wrap and work with small portions at a time.

Cut the roll into 1  cm long pieces and shape the orecchiette individually, one at a time. Dust the finished orecchiette with some flour to keep the pasta from sticking together.

Tip:  the orecchiette’s cupped shape and the texture roughness make this pasta excellent with many different sauces: try with a quick  tomato sauce or with bolognese sauce.

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