It’s a little bitter (some say, “spicy”) and it costs more than all other greens, but broccoli rabe is full of vitamins and minerals. I consider it a super food and serve it with dinner almost every week. It’s more interesting to the palate than broccoli, too.

Blanching broccoli rabe before sauteing is an unnecessary step and a waste of nutrients. Try my method: Wash the greens and chop them into three-inch sections. In a large saucepan, heat olive oil with minced garlic, then add the wet greens a handful at a time. Once you have all the greens sizzling in the pan, add some water (or broth) and salt (red pepper flakes optional) and quickly cover the pan. Lower the heat. This steamy process softens the stems and cooks the greens without sacrificing any of the vitamins and minerals that come from this nutritious plant. Stir the greens with tongs.

This is a great side dish. It also goes well with orecchiette and parmesan, or with good Italian sausage. It makes a great sandwich with provolone on crusty bread, or with roast pork. I mention the meat additions only because of Italian traditions. Broccoli rabe can be a meal in itself.

One other thing: Leftover broccoli rabe, drained a bit, makes a great frittata.

Thirty-two other cooking tips from Dan Can Cook.

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