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Reinvent pasta night with Lemony Broccoli Rabe Pasta. Goat cheese accompanies Parmesan in this 30-minute dish made with your choice of filei, penne, or fusilli pasta.

Recipe by Southern Living February 2013


Credit: Jennifer Davick; Styling: Buffy Hargett

Recipe Summary

30 mins
Makes 4 to 6 servings


Ingredient Checklist


Instructions Checklist
  • Bring 4 qt. water to a boil in a large Dutch oven. Add 2 tsp. kosher salt, return to a boil, and stir in broccoli rabe. Cook 1 minute or until crisp-tender; drain. Plunge into ice water to stop cooking process; drain.

  • Cook pasta in Dutch oven according to package directions; drain, reserving 1/2 cup hot pasta water.

  • Melt butter with oil in Dutch oven over medium heat; add garlic, and sauté 1 to 2 minutes or until tender. Add red pepper and lemon zest; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Stir in broccoli rabe; cook, stirring constantly, 1 minute. Stir in hot cooked pasta, reserved pasta water, Parmesan, and lemon juice; cook 1 to 2 minutes. Season with kosher salt and black pepper. Top with cheese.

  • The Power of Pasta Water Before you drain off your perfectly cooked pasta (al dente, of course!), scoop out at least 1 cup of that rich, starchy pasta water to make an easy pan sauce. We used 1/4 to 1/2 cup in most of the dishes here, but for most recipes save a little extra in case you want a looser sauce. The cloudy broth marries with butter or oil for silky, creamy results. And because you've cooked your pasta with a proper amount of salt (about 1 Tbsp. kosher salt per quart of water), the leftover liquid delivers flavor too. Use it whenever you feel saucy.