Local specialties, Pasta, Recipes

Orecchiette with broccoli rabe (orecchiette alle cime di rapa)

Orecchiette with broccoli rabe

If you are here, chances are that you have heard about the iconic pasta from Puglia, orecchiette with broccoli rabe (in Italian: orecchiette alle cime di rapa).

Usually here I would write about.. the origin of this incredible dish. And, of course, some tips for preparing it the authentic way. And I would close recommending you to enjoy it with a great red wine from Puglia, e.g. a primitivo.

But when I saw this on X … it changed everything! 😀


What do you think about it? Leave me a comment, drop me an email or interact with me on X or Instagram!

By the way, here is your recipe 🙂 This time, I share the family recipe of a friend of mine; she is from Lecce, so she is an authentic expert in this orecchiette with broccoli rabe. Hope you will love it!

And if you like this recipe… PIN IT! 🙂

Orecchiette with broccoli rabe

If you have relatives from Puglia or ever visited that amazing Italian region, you must love orecchiette with broccoli rabe. Here the recipe from a dear friend of mine from Lecce! Enjoy
Prep Time20 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time40 minutes
Course: Primo
Cuisine: Italian, Pugliese, Regional
Keyword: Basic, Mediterranean, Puglia, Regional, Traditional, Vegan
Servings: 4 people
Calories: 425kcal
Author: Roberto
Cost: $2


  • a pot
  • a pan
  • a wooden spoon


  • 500 gr fresh orecchiette pasta
  • 500 gr broccoli rabe aka rapini
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 2-3 anchovies
  • 1 small red hot chili pepper
  • q.s. EVO oil
  • q.s. salt
  • q.s. black pepper (optional)


  • Wash the broccoli rabe and clean it, removing all the largest leaves and keeping the medium – small ones and the flowers.
    Orecchiette with broccoli rabe - broccoli rabe cleaning
  • Put water in a pot, salt it and make it boil. When it's ready, drop the broccoli rabe and let it boil for 6-8 minutes. Drain it but don't waste the water.
    Orecchiette with broccoli rabe - broccoli rabe boiling
  • Use the same water to cook the orecchiette. Usually it will take about 10 minutes. Drain them "al dente"…
    Orecchiette with broccoli rabe - orecchiette boiling
  • … while the orecchiette are boiling, prepare the sauce. In a pan, warm the EVO oil, add the garlic clove, the anchovies and the red hot chili pepper. Gently mix and after 3-4 minutes….
    Orecchiette with broccoli rabe - sauce
  • … drop the broccoli rabe, the orecchiette and some pasta water (half glass). At medium-high heat, mix the orecchiette until the pasta is ready, add some EVO oil and serve!
    Orecchiette with broccoli rabe - mixing

If you love vegetarian pasta, you may want to try other vegan-friendly recipes, like tagliatelle with chickpeas or an incredible soup from Tuscany, a ribollita! While, if you don’t want to move from Puglia, I can recommend another great pasta, this time from the city of Bari: spaghetti all’assassina (or killer spaghetti)… will it be dangerous? 😉 Hope to see you soon safe!


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Buon appetito!

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