We're on the lookout for spectacular spring recipes and nabbed a new vegetarian entrée on the menu at Chef Harold Dieterle's NYC outpost The Marrow: Broccoli Rabe Stuffed Shells. Dieterle stuffs pasta shells with ricotta and serves them with a broccoli rabe pesto and sauce made with hot cherry peppers. "Being half-Italian, I grew up eating a lot of baked pasta dishes as a kid. I am always looking for modern ways to include them on new menus," says the winner of Top Chef Season 1.
- 8 -10 jumbo pasta shells
- 1 bunch broccoli rabe, blanched briefly in boiling water and divided
- 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil, divided
- 3 cloves garlic, finely chopped and divided
- 4 tablespoons freshly shaved pecorino, divided
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice
- 2 tablespoons ricotta
- 1 cup vegetable stock, divided
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 2 tablespoons hot cherry peppers, chopped
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 2 teaspoons pine nuts
- 2 teaspoons raisins
- 2 teaspoons parsley, chopped
- 2 tablespoons breadcrumbs, toasted
- Preheat oven to 350°F.
- Cook the jumbo pasta shells al dente, according to package directions. Drain and set aside.
- To make the pesto, combine half the bunch of broccoli rabe, 2 tablespoons of extra virgin olive oil, 2 cloves of garlic, 2 tablespoons of pecorino and the lemon juice in a food processor. Pulse until coarsely chopped.
- Transfer the pesto to a mixing bowl. Fold the ricotta into the pesto and stuff into four or five cooked shells.
- Transfer the shells to a baking dish and heat in oven with half the vegetable stock for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, to make the pan sauce, combine the remaining broccoli rabe, extra virgin olive oil, garlic and vegetable stock with white wine, hot cherry peppers, butter, pine nuts, raisins and parsley in a large skillet.
- Cook until the broccoli rabe is heated through.
- Take the pan sauce and place in the center of the serving dish, leaving some liquid for basting.
- Remove the stuffed shells from the oven and place around the pan sauce.
- Baste the shells with the remaining pan sauce and sprinkle the remaining pecorino and toasted breadcrumbs on top.
Find more broccoli rabe dishes on Food Republic: