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Broccoli Rabe Pesto

The reason this recipe is one of my favorites is because you can use it on way more than just pasta - drizzle it on chicken, fish, or your favorite roasted veggie grain bowl. It’s like regular pesto, but heartier and more healthy because more veg, right? I’m no nutritionist but I’m a flavor expert, and if you like the rabe, try this recipe for pesto on top of everything. Xoxo


1 cup walnuts, toasted

1 bunch broccoli rabe

1 lb bucatini

2 cloves garlic

1 cup basil leaves

1/2 lemon, juice

1/4 cup Pecorino cheese, grated, plus more to serve

red pepper flakes, to taste

salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste


Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Trim ends of broccoli rabe and discard. Cut in half, and add to boiling water. Cook for 2 to 3 minutes, remove to a strainer using tongs. Add pasta to the boiling water and cook following package instructions for al dente.


Meanwhile, add 1/4 cup olive oil and garlic to large high-sided pan. Turn heat to low and allow garlic to infuse oil for about five minutes. Remove garlic and add to blender along with one cup of blanched broccoli rabe, basil, lemon juice, Pecorino, half of walnuts, salt and pepper. Blend to chop ingredient, and slowly drizzle in 1 cup of olive oil until mixture is blended but and not fully emulsified. Adjust season to taste.


Add pasta and remaining broccoli rabe to oil. Sauté to warm through and season with red pepper flakes to taste. Remove from heat and dress pasta with enough pesto to coat. To serve, garnish with more cheese and chopped walnuts. Finished with a drizzle of extra-virgin olive oil.


Tip: Use the pesto to top your favorite salmon, chicken, or roasted vegetable dish.



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