Rapini facts

Yield: 1 servings

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Move over Broccoli ... your cousin is in town! Rapini is trendy, a tad bitter and full of what's good for you. LOOKS LIKE ~~~~~~~~~~ Rapini is medium to dark green in color. It looks like broccoli, except that has very slender stalks, more leaves and small clusters of tiny buds instead of one large head. Sometimes the buds sprout into small yellow flowers. ALSO KNOWN AS ... ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Rapini has lots of aliases, such as: Italian broccoli, broccoli rabe, raab, broccoli-rape and broccoli di rape. PRELIMINARY INTRODUCTIONS - The entire plant is edible: stem, leaves, heads and flowers - Rapini has a pleasant, slightly bitter flavor with the leaves tasting the strongest. - Rapini is grown in Ontario and its season coincides with broccoli. It is mostly available in Italian fresh produce stores, butis being stocked in regular supermarkets more frequently. - Rapini is a crusiferous vegetable and is closely related to cabbage, broccoli, Brussel sprouts, cauliflower, kohlrabi and kale. BUYING AND STORING ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ - Look for firm rapini avoiding wilted or yellow leaves and stems. - Store in the refrigerator unwashed and use within a few days of buying. COOKING ~~~~~~~ - Rapini is as versatile as broccoli. It can be sauteed, braised, steamed, broiled, stir-fried or cooked in the microwave. - The stems take longer to cook than the leaves and buds. Cook them first. - Quick cooking is the rule, cutting the heat when rapini is barely tender and bright green.

RAPINI PARTNERS ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ - Lemon juice, white wine vinegar, garlic, red pepper flakes, anchovies, olive oil butter, parmesan, scallions, shallots, onions and Italian sausage all work well with rapini. - The pungent, earthy flavor of rapini marries well with such mild foods as eggs, pasta, risotto, polenta, cheese, potatoes and puree of fava beans. - Try rapini in omelettes, quiches and frittatas. Toss it with pasta, olive oil, roasted garlic, parmesan and Italian sausages. Serve it au gratin or sauteed with garlic and lemon juice. NUTRITION TIP OF THE WEEK ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Rappini is an excellent source of vitamins A and C and a good source of calcium, iron and potassium. Plus, it's low in calories andhigh in fibre. From An Article In FOODsmarts: Rapini by Madeleine Greey in Toronto Star (27 August, 1995) Transcribed By: S. Lefkowitz Submitted By SAM LEFKOWITZ On 08-27-95

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