Thursday, February 25, 2010

Broccoli Rabe

I've tried the above vegetable a handful of times, and never liked it - too bitter. But Eating Well featured broccoli rabe as the vegetable star of the latest issue, and included tips for toning down the bitterness. Namely: blanch it, and balance it with other flavors. The broccoli rabe and orzo salad with lemon and feta was very good. I wonder, though - was it only the prep technique that made it likeable, or is it that my palate has grown more tolerant of bitter flavors since I last tried it? Many of the things I like these days (coffee, strong beer, very-dark chocolate) are bitter, so it could be both.


Sparkling Squirrel said...

I've always liked broccoli rabe at restaurants (haven't cooked it myself), but generally like bitter things, so I can't help with the technique vs. taste debate. I recall having it in a stir fry and in a risotto (or at least a pilaf).

Karin said...

The secret is in the preparation. Blanching helps leach out the bitter, water-soluble nasties. But using the broccoli rabe with other strongly flavored foods also helps.