Broccoli rabe (commonly marketed in English as broccoli raab, rapini or broccoli rabe) is a green cruciferous vegetable. The edible parts are the leaves, buds, and stems. The buds somewhat resemble broccoli florets, but the buds don’t form a large head.
Crucifers such as broccoli, cabbage, kale, turnip, kohlrabi, collard greens, daikon, and Brussels sprouds are potent anticancer foods. They help to neutralize carcinogens and help support the liver’s ability to excreted toxins thereby reducing the risk for cancer. In this way, they support the detoxification process and support liver health.
Will the real broccoli please stand up?
I’m reminded of the time I was having dim sum for brunch. Our table asked for some vegetables to go with the dumplings etc. The waiter asked “broccoli”? We said, “sure”, to which he asked further “Chinese broccoli or Canadian broccoli”? We answered Chinese. Broccoli rabe in black bean saw arrived a few minutes later.
Technically speaking, broccoli rabe is not broccoli. It is a vegetable that is related to turnip but has distinctive broccoli-like buds. It is known for its slightly bitter taste, and is particularly associated with Italian, Galician, and Portuguese cuisines. Within Italian cuisine, the plant is heavily associated with Southern Italian cuisine where rapini is common.
More broccoli rabe and broccoli recipes
If you’re sick of your regular salad recipes, don’t forget that broccoli makes a great base. Crunchy and it won’t get soft, a Broccoli Salad is a great way to get some cancer-fighting, liver-detoxify broccoli into your diet.
Broccoli Rabe & Sun-Dried Tomatoes with Pine Nuts
- 1 bunch rapini about 1 lb (500 g)
- 3 tbsp 50 mL olive oil
- 2 tbsp 25 mL pine nuts
- 3 tbsp 50 mL chopped sun-dried tomatoes
- 1/4 tsp 1 mL salt
Remove about 1/4 inch from base of rapini stalks. In deep skillet of boiling salted water, cover and cook rapini until tender, about 4 minutes. Drain and gently dry.
In same skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Toast pine nuts over low heat until light brown, about 4 minutes. Add cooked rapini and sun-dried tomatoes and heat.