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The Curious Case of the Broccoli Rabe: A Collection of Interesting Facts

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Broccoli Rabe
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The Curious Case of the Broccoli Rabe: A Collection of Interesting Facts

Broccoli rabe, also known as rapini, forms part of the cruciferous family of vegetables that includes kale, cabbage, and Brussels sprouts. Although it can be considered a type of turnip or mustard green, broccoli rabe boasts an abundance of nutrients and vitamins that can make it an important addition to any diet. Here are some interesting facts about broccoli rabe you may not have known.

 

Broccoli rabe is a leafy green vegetable that is often used in Italian cooking. The word broccoli rabe is derived from the Italian word broccoletti”  which means “little branches of broccoli.” Broccoli rabe can be eaten raw or cooked, but it is most often boiled with garlic and olive oil.

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Broccoli Rabe

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Introduction: What is Broccoli Rabe and Why is it Getting Popular?

Who would’ve thought that an innocuous-looking little weed could make such a mark on popular culture? As a relative unknown to most people just 20 years ago, broccoli rabe (also known as rapini) has suddenly exploded onto restaurant menus and into grocery stores across America.

 

What accounts for its popularity? Well, it turns out that broccoli rabe is about more than just good looks rapini is rich in nutrients, particularly vitamin C and K, as well as dietary fiber. In addition, it contains phytochemicals like sulforaphane which may help prevent certain types of cancer.

 

So what does all of that mean? It means you should give broccoli rabe a try! But don’t take our word for it; here are some interesting facts about broccoli rabe.

1. Rapini is not really related to broccoli at all; rather, it belongs to a different species altogether.

2. The name rapini comes from Italian slang meaning little turnip, though rapini actually resembles broccoli more closely than turnips do.

3. The leaves of rapini can be eaten raw or cooked; they have a flavor similar to mustard greens or turnip greens.

4. You can find several varieties of rapini available in supermarkets today, including the green-leafed Tuscan variety and purple-tinged Castelfranco variety, among others.Broccoli Rabe

5. Broccoli rabe actually tastes best when cooked with high heat, so sautéing or stir-frying are ideal methods of preparation.

 

The name rapini comes from Italian words meaning turnip-like or of turnips, although it is not closely related to turnips either!

 

What’s the Best Way to Cook Broccoli Rabe?

It depends on how you plan to use it. Generally, broccoli rabe is blanched and then sautéed in a skillet with olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes. However, because its stems are so tough and fibrous, they need some TLC before cooking.

 

To prepare broccoli rabe for sautéing or grilling, cut off about an inch from the bottom of each stem; discard these tough bottoms. Then, trim away any remaining woody parts that may be sticking out.

 

Finally, blanch your broccoli rabe in boiling water until tender about 3 minutes. After draining, pat dry with paper towels and proceed as usual.

 

What’s Your Favorite Way to Eat Broccoli Rabe? : If you’re looking for something different, try braising broccoli rabe in tomato sauce with pancetta and onion.

 

What Do You Think Makes This Green Superfood So Good For You? : The vegetable’s health benefits come from its high concentration of vitamin C and beta-carotene, two antioxidants that fight free radicals in our bodies these harmful molecules can cause cell damage over time, leading to chronic diseases like cancer.

 

A Collection of Interesting Facts about the “Cabbage Turnip” Family

What is Cabbage Turnip? Cabbage turnip, also known as broccoli rabe or rapini, is a leafy green vegetable. It is part of the same family as cabbage and Brussels sprouts but has large flower buds instead of bulb-like structures. Its small size can make it look like a mini broccoli plant.

 

However, unlike broccoli plants, which are grown for their flowers (the florets), cabbage turnip is grown for its leaves. The texture of its leaves resembles that of mustard greens or collard greens.

 

In addition to its leaves, which are eaten raw in salads or cooked in stir-fries and soups, cabbage turnip also produces yellow flowers that can be used to garnish dishes.

 

Why Is It Called Cabbage Turnip? The name cabbage turnip comes from both its appearance and taste. Like a turnip, the cabbage turnip looks like a root vegetable with its white bottom and purple top.

 

Also like a turnip, cabbage turnip tastes similar to other members of the brassica family it’s peppery when raw and becomes milder when cooked. However, because it’s not actually related to either cabbages or turnips, it’s called by another name entirely broccoli rabe.

 

Where Does Cabbage Turnip Come From? While many vegetables have been cultivated since ancient times, cabbage turnip was first cultivated in China around 300 B.C.E. Since then, it has spread throughout Asia and Europe where today it is primarily grown in Italy, France, Spain, and Portugal.

 

How Do You Eat Cabbage Turnip? While you may know how to eat regular broccoli or cauliflower, you might be unsure about how to prepare cabbage turnip.

 

Nutritional Profile

Did you know that broccoli rabe, also known as rapini and broccolini, is a cruciferous vegetable closely related to common broccoli? While it’s widely believed that eating cruciferous vegetables like cauliflower, cabbage, kale, and Brussels sprouts is good for your health, recent research has revealed just how beneficial these veggies really are.

 

In fact, researchers have found that consuming three servings of cruciferous vegetables per week can reduce your risk of developing cancer by up to 20 percent!

 

Researchers aren’t sure why exactly these veggies help fight cancer, but they suspect that their high concentration of antioxidants may be responsible. However, many people don’t enjoy eating broccoli rabe due to its bitter taste and tough texture.

Broccoli Rabe

Luckily, there are plenty of ways to prepare broccoli rabe so that it tastes great and one study even found that steaming or microwaving reduces its bitterness more than boiling does! So go ahead and take another bite; we promise you won’t regret it.

Conclusion

There’s a lot to be said about broccoli rabe. It has more iron than spinach. It can be served both cooked and raw. It’s also incredibly delicious when cooked with a few red pepper flakes and lemon zest! (Recipe to follow). If you haven’t tried it, add it to your menu soon. You won’t regret it!