Store bunched greens in a plastic bag in the refrigerator up to 1 week.
Blanch pre-washed (and chopped, if desired) greens in boiling water for 1 minute. Plunge into an ice water bath to cool. Drain and wring out as much water as possible. Form into convenient serving-size balls. Wrap balls in plastic wrap and freeze in quart or gallon-size freezer bags.
Fill a large bowl or dishpan with cold water. Add greens and swirl around vigorously. All the dirt and sand will sink to the bottom. Lift greens out of basin and into a salad spinner or colander. Spin greens to dry or drain as best you can and dry on towels.
This recipe is good not only for broccoli rabe, but is capable of transforming any of the coarser leafy greens (kale, collards, mustard greens, turnip greens, escarole) into something utterly sinful.
- 1 lb. short, thick pasta (orecchiette, fusilli or cavatappi)
- 1 bunch broccoli rabe, chopped
- 1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
- 1-2 heads of garlic, sliced
- 1/4 tsp. chili flakes, or to taste (or a fresh chili, sliced with scissors right into the oil)
- 1 tin anchovy filets, drained and coarsely chopped
- Pecorino Romano, grated
Put a large pot of water on to boil, and in the meantime wash and chop the greens. Salt the water generously when it boils and add the pasta. When the pasta is half done, toss the greens right in the water with them.
Separately, in a small pan, saute the garlic and chili gently in the oil. Before the garlic browns, turn down the flame to low and add the anchovies, stirring until they dissolve. (Do not be afraid, we have served this to staunchly anti-anchovy people and they were instantly converted). When the pasta is al dente drain it and toss with the garlic sauce. Serve with the grated Pecorino. Buon appetito!