Gluten Free Angel Hair Pasta with Rapini (Broccoli Rabe) & Sweet Pepper Vegetable Medley
“I cook to inspire my husband to pay attention to me.”
Here is some simple yet filling dish that is easy to make and pretty to serve. I was recently treated with a new dish containing rapini. It was a clear vegetable soup, and I liked rapini in it so much, that I decided to try to cook something out of it so that my husband would enjoy it as well. Cooked rapini has a slightly bitter taste. It reminds a little bit of spinach, and it looks like broccoli but the buds do not form a head. Its another name is broccoli rabe, but it belongs to turnip family, nothing to do with broccoli. Rapini contains vitamins A, C, K, potassium, calcium, folate, manganese, fiber and iron. It has been purported to have anti-cancer properties due to glucosinolates.
I chose gluten free pasta (rice angel hair) as I read lately a lot about gluten and digestion issues related to gluten sensitivity or intolerance. I even survived a gluten-free diet for about three weeks, and must admit that I felt much better during that time. It is not hard to observe this diet, it is just that I have other restrictions, and together I would have a very limited choice. I learned a lesson from it. Gluten free diet can make you feel better, so I do try to limit its intake.
Gluten free rice pasta “Angel hair” turned out to be really good, especially disguised under a load of veggies. The only piece of advice, when you cook it for the first time, make sure you rinse it under cold water after it is done. You may also add a bit of oil in the water before cooking. It does not preserve shape as regular pasta.
– 6-8 oz gluten free rice angel hair pasta, cooked, drained, rinsed under cold water.
– olive oil and butter.
– Italian spices mix.
– Basil olive oil – this brand used for the recipe. I sprinkle it over the pasta after it is done.
– 1 bunch of rapini (it is normally sold by bunches). I got one in Publix.
– 1 head of garlic
– grapeseed oil for cooking.
– pine nuts to sprinkle on cooked rapini.
– 2 medium to large sweet peppers.
– 1 onion.
– 1 squash (optional).
– 1/2 jalapeno pepper or red chili pepper. Any hot pepper would do – use it to your taste.
– spices: salt, black ground pepper, Italian seasoning, Rustic Italiano spice (highly recommended), garlic powder, grapeseed oil.
– red/yellow cherry sweet tomatoes, crescent-moon shaped slices of avocado, herbs for decoration (oregano used for this recipe).
Start with cooking pasta and rapini in two separate bowls. For pasta, bring water to boil, add pasta, add a bit of olive oil (to prevent sticking) and cook until tender. Drain water, add butter and basil oil, sprinkle some Italian spices mix and keep it covered until other ingredients are ready.
Rinse rapini (do not slice it), bring water to boil and blanch rapini in boiling water for a few minutes. When thick stems at the bottom are soft, pull the leaves out and drain them. Heat grapeseed oil in a large skillet, slice garlic, chop cooked rapini. Add garlic to the skillet, then chopped rapini, salt and black ground pepper. Stir it all together and sprinkle some pine nuts on top. I also add a little bit of butter.
Sautee vegetables on a separate skillet for vegetable medley. Start with chopped onion, followed by sweet pepper, hot pepper and squash. Stir and taste after a few minutes. Done when soft. Add Rustic Italiano spice together with other spices at the end.
Put some pasta in the center of the plate. Then place vegetable medley on top of pasta. Arrange rapini around this ‘tower’. Insert some herb (fresh oregano shown in the photo) on top. Place crescent-moon shaped slices of avocado and halves of cherry tomatoes around the pasta. Enjoy!
Please share my recipe and let me know how it would come out!
The Amateur Expert.
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