I started eating broccoli rabe a few years ago and it's now one of my favorite vegetables. I don't find it as bitter as some describe it and enjoy the stalks far more than those on regular broccoli. Pairing broccoli rabe with cannellini beans is always the start of something good to eat, so when I saw this recipe at a weekly Weight Watcher meeting, I decided to make it to serve over pasta.
Adapted from WW Weekly, March 11-17, 2012
Servings 4 (6 PP)
1 1/2 tbs all purpose flour
1/2 tsp Kosher salt
1/4 tsp freshly ground black pepper
12 oz uncooked boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut in large chunks
2 tsp extra-virgin olive oil
1 cup fat free, reduced sodium chicken broth
1 tbs minced garlic
1/4 tsp crushed red pepper flakes
8 oz uncooked broccoli rabe or broccoli, coarsely chopped (about 6 cups)
15 oz canned cannellini beans, rinsed and drained
1 tbs fresh lemon juice
1/2 tsp grated lemon zest
1/8 tsp salt
On a plate, combine flour, salt, and pepper; add chicken and turn to coat. Heat oil in large nonstick skillet over medium high heat. Add chicken and cook, turning as needed, until browned (about 6 minutes). Remove to plate. Add broth, garlic, and red pepper flakes to same skillet and bring to a boil over high heat, scraping up browned bits with a wooden spoon. Add broccoli rabe, cover, and cook over medium high heat until crisp tender, about 5 minutes. Stir in beans; cover, and cook about 2 minutes more. Uncover and mash some beans to thicken sauce slightly. Stir in chicken and cook until heated through. Season with lemon juice, zest, and salt. Yields 4 one-cup servings.
This would be a fine dinner just as described above, but I served it over a cup of pasta and it was Sunday dinner worthy. Don't leave out the lemon because it really makes the broccoli rabe pop. Leaving the chicken in large chunks ensures that it won't dry out. My only misstep was that I determined to try whole wheat pasta (again) for health reasons. I've tried just about all that are on the market and the verdict is always the same: yuck! I'd rather eat half a cup of regular pasta than a pound of whole wheat.