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July’s produce log has proved a little challenging to get finished. I could blame it on the fact that I’m too busy eating but that wouldn’t be entirely true.

If this is your first visit, you’re seeing a month-by-month log of fresh produce, with a tally to see how my local versus non-local dollars compare. See April Produce Log for an introduction to the project. Here are May and June. You can download each one as a PDF. Here is July. Each month includes recipe ideas, links and PDFs to download.

Scroll down for more on July’s produce, reflections on eating in summer and recipe ideas.

It’s about this time in August that I want to push the pause button. I have yet to consume vast quantities of artichokes and because of that I’m not ready to see cantaloupe or even corn. Oregon’s artichokes are about a month late due to less-than-optimal weather.

This feeling of wanting to slow the tide of earthly delights is really just silly anxiety, stemming from a desire to savor as much and as deeply as possible. No one is stopping me, of course. To savor can imply taking time to create a spectacular dish. But savoring can just as easily mean standing at the kitchen counter eating a peach and licking the juice that drips down your arm.

I wrote about the comforts of seasonal eating and how limiting to what’s in season simplifies and allows you to enjoy eating on a different level. The desire to freeze the moment is that the overabundance from the garden and the sheer variety from the market begs for more time to enjoy it. There are only so many opportunities to cook for friends, which is the best way to celebrate all this bounty. In the absence of guests, I bang on my neighbor’s window with a big zucchini, hand a big bunch of basil to the teenager walking down the sidewalk, or give strawberries to the guy across the street.

Freezing the moment is what seasonal eating does, for better or worse. You’re up to your eyeballs in basil but you have to enjoy every leaf. For soon it won’t be there (except in frozen form, which is pretty darn good).

What’s Cooking?

Berries. Three visits to a local farm yielded 11 pounds of berries (a couple more visits needed), most of which go in the freezer. But not before making blueberry sorbetto topped with raspberries, with a little pinot noir thrown in for fun. And also not before making berry crisp, with marionberries and peaches. For those who don’t like to bake, this is a crowd pleaser and idiot proof (unless you burn it under the broiler). Make your own raspberry vinegar by tossing a handful of raspberries in some champagne or white wine vinegar in a mason jar and let sit in the sun. Strain out the berries once the vinegar has turned nice and red.

Carrots & Zucchini. I bought a large bunch of carrots and then pulled more from the garden, which is too many if you don’t love carrots. So I experimented with pickled carrots (refrigerator style) to make use of them. I loosely followed this recipe but I think I should have cooked the carrots longer. Together with my pickled zucchini (which I modified to make savory with no sugar, added garlic, dill, onions and coriander seed), I have ready snacks to put out when guests come over. See June’s log for other zucchini recipes.

Arugula. It’s growing like gangbusters this year which means eating a salad a day, sometimes two. Because of arugula’s peppery flavor, the sweetness of a raspberry vinegar dressing compliments the kick. When you have too many greens you have no choice but to start eating breakfast salad. There’s at least one other person out there who wants savory for breakfast. Use any lettuce or vegetables you like. Pictured is my take on it with arugula, shredded carrots and sunflower seeds, along with the soft-boiled eggs.

Beans. Last year, my beans died a horrible death. This year, I can’t keep up. I’m growing the Italian romano beans—a long, flat, wide bean with a nutty, sweet flavor that almost double in size overnight. My father used to make stewed beans that we had with polenta—the polenta being a poor man’s substitute for meat in Italy. I loved this dish; there was something wonderful about how the beans almost fell apart. I now know it’s called fagiolini in umido. Like many Italian recipes there are no hard and fast rules, unless it’s the rules of the person whose recipe you’re using. I don’t blanch my beans first and I also add torn fresh basil and shaved parmigiano at the end.

Artichokes. Sorely missing from this month’s log, a bag of baby artichokes are sitting in the fridge. I couldn’t want till next month to encourage trying this recipe. La vignarola is a Roman spring vegetable stew. Because Oregon’s artichokes are late, one can enjoy a spring dish in summer. The Italians are always improvising with what’s available. The catch here is that fava beans are called for and the planets didn’t align properly for the two vegetables to co-occur. The overabundant beans (see above) will have to be the understudy for favas.

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Phew. A long post but there’s a lot to say. If you use one of these recipes, let me know how it goes. If you have a favorite recipe using one of these fruits or vegetables, please comment!

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In April, I posted my first month tracking fresh produce expenditures—comparing local versus non-local produce. You can download a PDF of May, which is easier to read than the image below. To paraphrase a saying, eat the colors of the rainbow and you’ll be fine. May is already looking more colorful.

Two things I’m struggling with:

Defining local: If I were to use the 100-mile radius rule, then I would have to find out if the Washington apple I buy at grocery store is from a farm within 100 miles. My very loose definition of local is Oregon and Washington. Given that a big percentage of my local produce costs are from the farmers market, I’m fine with my definition.

Including garden costs: This project isn’t about tracking garden costs. Here is an example of a couple who tracked all input costs, labor and output from their garden. This is far too ambitious for me. An excellent read is Barbara Kingsolver’s book Animal, Vegetable, Miracle. Her family existed for a year on what they grew or could buy within a 50-mile radius. I am only tracking what I harvest (visually) and the cost of seeds or starts, but not compost or fertilizer. However, I haven’t devised a strategy for tracking every sprig of thyme! I’m a big proponent of having an herb garden. Given the cost of fresh herbs and the flavor boost your cooking, herb gardening is where I would put my effort if I had very little space. See this culinary herb primer  on Culinate.com.

 

Maybe you’re wondering what I do with all this. Here are a few links or suggestions:

Radishes and Fennel went into a Radish, Fennel, Orange Salad. The watermelon radish, if you can find it, is a visual delight—white on the outside, hot pink on the inside. Radishes make my stomach burn but my mother loves them. It was Mother’s Day. What can you do? The sweetness of the fennel and orange balance the peppery radishes. Plus the salad looks kick ass.

• In an earlier post, I wrote about Rabes (Raabs), and offer up a quick way to cook broccoli rabe. You can also download a recipe for Orecchiette con Cime di Rapa, a signature dish of the Puglia region in Italy.

• You can read about rhubarb and download a recipe for a Rosemary Rhubarb Galette.

• Chef in the Market, Jeremy Eckel of Bar Avignon in Portland, OR, made a wonderful farro (This has become my favorite grain. Stay tuned for another post.) salad with grilled asparagus and spring sweet onions. Add some olive oil, fresh lemon juice and zest, and chopped hazelnuts for a great Spring BBQ salad.

New Seasons market has a nice kale and carrot salad that I’ve recreated at home. It uses an Asian-inspired dressing of cumin, canola oil, fresh ginger, soy sauce, rice wine vinegar and sesami oil. No need to cook the kale first; the vinegar breaks it down so make it a little ahead. I also use the Italian kale in minestrone soup. Sadly, it is still soup season in Portland!

If you have any questions and comments, let me know! Share some of your favorite seasonal recipe ideas. Cheers!

…you better do something with it. Like asparagus, rhubarb does not have long enough a season for one to ponder buying it another day—unlike potatoes, greens or onions, for example. But ask your market vendors. They usually know how much longer something will be available.

One look at these ruby stalks and you think “Making a pie sounds like a lovely idea, doesn’t it?” And then the poor things go limp because your culinary intentions were just that, intentions. But I’ll say this about not only rhubarb: Just cook it while it’s available. Don’t wait for a special occasion or more time or the right mood. The doing of it inspires more of the same. This is true of just about anything.

I say, forget the pie! You can download my Rosemary Rhubarb Galette recipe, which is like pie, only more wabi sabi, and therefore, more fun to make. Not to mention easier.

JeanAnn Van Krevelen of Portland Foodie wrote about her love affair with rhubarb as well as a few ideas on cooking with rhubarb. Splendid Table’s, Lynne Rossetto Kasper, offers a Rhubarbarita recipe for when a regular margarita just won’t do. Now I’ve got a quart of this syrupy garnet goodness in my freezer, ready for the next party.

The easiest thing to do is chop it up and cook it with a little water and sugar (like you would for cranberry sauce), till the rhubarb is tender. Eat it with a pork chop or for breakfast with granola and yogurt. Couldn’t be easier. It freezes well, too. Just chop it up and put it in a freezer bag. It’ll keep for a year.

If you’re lucky enough to have a good farmers market nearby, as we are in Portland, you might see all sorts of raabs (or rabe)—kale raab, collard raab, even Brussels sprout raab. But what are they?

They are, simply, the flowering stems of the plants that fall into the very large family called brassicaceae—the cabbage or mustard family. In this family are vegetables like cabbage, cauliflower, kale, broccoli, turnips, mustards, kholrabi and radishes.

Many are familiar with broccoli rabe (also known as rapini, cime di rapa, broccoli raab, broccoli di rape, among others). But while broccoli raab has been bred as its own distinct plant (and in the same cultivar group as turnips), these other raabs are the flowering stems of the plants—the kales, collards and Brussels sprouts, for example.

Just as herbs bolt, flower and then go to seed, so, too do these plants. For example, Brussels sprout raab are the flowering stems in spring from the fall crop of the vegetable. Jamie from Groundworks Organics said that rabes were considered “farmer food.” These flowering tips were among the few green things still growing in late winter and not considered good for market. The window is also too short to bother having grocery stores sell them.

But times have changed. People are willing to try new things. And we have lots of rabe among us.

The varying textures of the stems, leaves and flowers are appealing, as are their color variations. Each tastes slightly different and most are more mild than broccoli rabe, which can be quite bitter. All are very nutritious—and include vitamins like C, A or K and potassium, calcium and iron. And many have anti-cancer properties and are high in antioxidants.

One of the best ways to cook raab is to boil just til the stems are tender and then drain. Heat some olive oil in a skillet, add some crushed garlic and a pinch of red pepper flake. Add the rabe, tossing with tongs till coated with oil and seasoning. Add salt and pepper to taste and a squeeze of lemon.

In Southern Italy, broccoli raab is eaten in abundance, and one of the most popular dishes of the region is Orecchiette con cime di rapa. Give the anchovies a try even if you think you won’t like them. Like fish sauce in Vietnamese and Thai cooking, they’re meant to add depth, not impart a fishy taste. Follow this loosely—varying the amount of pepper, anchovies and greens. Rapini cooks down much like spinach because it’s mostly leaves. You can also download the recipe.

Recipe: Orecchiette con cime di rapa
serves 4

1 lb. orecchiette (little ear-shaped pasta)
1 or 2 bunches broccoli rabe (rapini), washed, roughly cut in 2-inch chunks
1 or 2 garlic cloves, crushed
2 to 6 anchovy fillets
Good pinch red pepper flake
2 T olive oil
Optional: fine bread crumbs
Salt to taste

1. Put a big pot of water on boil with plenty of salt.
2. Lay the whole bunch of rapini on a cutting board and roughly chop into 2-inch (or so) sections—using the greens, stems and buds. It will seem like a lot but it cooks down. Rinse and drain the greens, leaving a bit of water on the leaves (for steaming during saute).
3. In a big skillet, heat the oil and saute the garlic, anchovies and red pepper. Don’t let the garlic burn. Using a wooden spoon, smash up the anchovies till they melt. At the same time, add the pasta to the rapidly boiling water (both the pasta and the rapini take about 10 minutes, so you can do them at the same time).
4. Add the rapini to the skillet and saute over medium heat. You may need to allow some to wilt before adding the rest. Add a little salt (not so much because the anchovies have salt, as does the pasta water). Cook the rapini till the stems are just tender, but not overcooked.
5. Halfway through the pasta cooking, scoop out about 1/2 cup of the pasta water and set aside. Cook till just tender, or al dente, and drain.
6. Add the pasta to the skillet with the rapini, stirring to combine well. Add some of the reserved pasta water, the starch of which combines with the olive oil to create a sauce. Add salt if necessary.
7. Serve sprinkled with some fine breadcrumbs. This dish is excellent with a Primativo or Salice Salentino (both hearty reds from Puglia).

Note: You can try boiling rapini first and then sauteing, but I find that sauteing alone is sufficient and the rapini is less soggy (the stems of rapini are less woody than some of the other rabes). Some recipes call for sausage, and some call for parmigiano (a little odd since Italians don’t normally mix cheese with fish). In other words, look for other recipes and experiment. It might seem strange to serve with a hearty red but the dish is hearty, and Puglia is not known for its white wines. An inexpensive Salice Salentino is available at Trader Joes.

I love white beans and always keep them handy. Their white color contrasts nicely with colorful veg like carrots and greens. I prefer the small white beans, which you can get in bulk at most grocery stores. Bob’s Red Mill carries at least three types of white beans (It’s worth a trip to their store.). Here, I use their small white beans. But you can also use navy beans or the larger cannellini beans.

This is a nice hearty soup that can be made into many variations. You can skip the fennel and add thin strips of kale (my favorite is lacinato, also known as Italian black kale) when you add the beans and water. The point being that soup has room for experimentation. For example, if you like a soup that has a strong fennel flavor, add more fennel seed. If you aren’t sure, either skip it or use a little less. The fennel bulb on its own won’t emit as much fennel flavor, which is why I’ve added the fennel seed.

The Recipe

Ingredients
1 cup dry small white beans, navy beans or cannellini, soaked overnight
1 bay leaf
1 sprig thyme
1/2 teaspoon fennel seeds, slightly crushed
Small pinch of red pepper flake
2 T olive oil
1 carrot, chopped small about 1/8 inch size
1 celery, chopped small about 1/8 inch size
1 onion, chopped small about 1/8 inch size
1 small to medium fennel bulb, halved and halved again, thinly sliced
3 canned plum tomatoes, chopped
8 cups stock or water
salt and pepper to taste

Preparation
1. Chop all vegetables. Heat oil in a stock pot. Saute vegetables, a pinch of salt and herbs for about 10 minutes on low to medium heat, slightly covered. This will sweat the vegetables.
2. Add the tomatoes and saute another minute. Add the beans and stock. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat to low. Simmer, partially covered for about 1 1/2 hours, or until beans are tender. Add salt to taste towards end of cooking.
3. Puree in a blender about 1/3 of the soup. Add pureed soup back to the pot.
4. Optional: drizzle with a little good olive oil before serving. Serve with a rustic bread and salad.

Notes: The red pepper flake just adds depth and rounds out the flavor; the soup is not meant to be spicy. Use what herbs you have. Add more or less stock or water depending on desired thickness of soup.

Download the White Bean Fennel recipe as a PDF.

Almost without trying, I’ve created a ritual I savor: making soup every Sunday. Call it my religion, at least while it’s cold outside. I went from being intimidated by soup to experimenting—the basics being, well, pretty basic. While there is no shame in following recipes, I’m more inclined to make soup if I’m in a soup mood, and then create something from what is available. Cooking moves us all in different ways (and some of us not at all). It’s fun to arrive at cooking intuitively. To get there, you have to just do it, usually by following enough recipes first.

My ritual involves soaking beans in a bowl of water on Saturday. Come Sunday morning, as I’m having coffee and listening to NPR, I start chopping vegetables. As the soup simmers, I do chores, and before you know it, there’s a pot of soup.

I plan to post a weekly Sunday Soup recipe. This week is White Bean Fennel. You’ll also find Asian-Inspired Butternut Squash in an earlier post.

Here are some tips:

Make your own stock. Vegetable is the easiest. Deborah Madison’s Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone has a brilliant stock section that I refer to every time, the soiled pages to prove it. It is an all-around excellent reference, not just for vegetarians. Brin Eats was kind enough to post Deborah’s stock tips. Making your own has several benefits. It’s cheaper than buying chicken or veg stock. It tastes better than water. It recycles unused veg. You can make it while you cook other things (or save veg trimmings in a ziplock to make stock later).

At its most simple, better-than-water stock takes only some onion, garlic, celery, carrots and salt. Possibly a potato. A few mushrooms. Maybe some herbs. More stuff tastes even better—parmigiano rind, the ends of winter squash, fennel bulb trimmings, to name a few. Saute them, add water, simmer, strain, enjoy.

Keep a supply of dried beans and grains. Not only do they look pretty if you have a place to display them in jars, but available staples makes you more likely to make soup. White beans, black beans, barley, rice, etc. I go to Goodwill every so often to find inexpensive jars, slowly replacing all my plastic.

Always have carrots, celery and onions in the fridge. These three ingredients start nearly every soup. They also happen to be the backbone of your veg stock.

Have a good stock pot. No need for anything fancy. Just have something big enough for your ingredients and about 8 cups of water.

Use what’s in season. Need inspiration? Just wander the farmers market or your local organic grocery store. Buy a head of cauliflower if it looks good. Bring it home. Look up a recipe. In that order. Finding a recipe in one of your many cookbooks (and then going and buying ingredients) is like looking for a needle in a haystack. Instead, work in reverse. This method forces you to try a new recipe. Making your favorite minestrone over and over is wonderful. But pushing yourself has its rewards. Enter your market finds into a site like Epicurious plus the word “soup” and see what you come up with.

Invite friends over. Warm soup is a humble and unfussy meal to feed to friends along with bread and salad. Soak your beans on Saturday. Make soup on Sunday and feed your friends during the week after the flavors have been able to meld.

Don’t forget to make enough for leftovers! Depending on how much space you have in your freezer,  you can squirrel away enough soup to last you all winter.

Not that squash soup recipes don’t proliferate now, but I had intended on posting this well before Thanksgiving. Years ago, while still living back East, I was making my first pumpkin soup in my very small kitchen. My mother once marveled at how I managed to cook as much as I did in such a teeny space. You make do by teetering cutting boards on top of the trash can.

I was using a cookbook with gorgeous photography that I bought used in Houston, of all places. I say “of all places” because this was the second of only two good things about Houston. The other was the cavernous grocery store with aisles upon aisles of international food and still-hot packages of fresh tortillas. I had yet to move to Portland, Oregon, a paean to food and great grocery stores. But I digress.

While I cooked, I listened to an NPR program with door-bell ringing and foot-stepping sound effects as if famous chefs were arriving at someone’s house. Each chef announced the dish they brought and then described the recipe. It reminded me of a Three Stooges record album I listened to over and over as a kid, clanking buckets and slamming doors, your imagination filling in the rest.

One chef brought pumpkin soup, only his contained crab meat. I shut off the gas, ran downstairs, hopped over the back fence and minutes later I was back in the kitchen with rather expensive lump blue crab meat. It helped living behind a Safeway. The soup was delicious but it was also the last time I splurged on crab meat, probably the result of a not-grateful-enough family member. Perhaps I’ll try it again but this time with dungeness. But what I have loved every since is how versatile this soup can be with a little experimentation.

marketsquashesThe farmers markets, and even grocery stores, are awash in gorgeous gourds. Hubbard, delicata (at left, oblong off-white with stripes) and butternut are all good options for soup. Delicata is my favorite for its rich, nutty taste. Both it and butternut will peel with a sharp vegetable peeler. If you thought you first had to roast the squash, think again. This is easier and perhaps will prevent you from using canned pumpkin.

I strayed from my original recipe and added curry powder, which quickly became a hit. My non-cooking mother has turned my soup into a tradition, making it when I’m not around. We are a family not terribly inclined to tradition. So this, and the fact that my mother largely shuns cooking, means this soup is kept alive against all odds.

Where I start with sauteed leeks, Cathy Whims, chef of Portland’s Nostrana, turned me on to beginning with a soffrito. This is essentially chopped vegetables that are the base of many Italian soups. The difference is pronounced and adds a greater level of depth. She used a few small hot chilis that were removed before pureeing the soup, and then crumbled almond cookie on top, finishing with a peppery drizzle of olive oil. Superb.

My recipe below is a very uncomplicated, semi-Asian style soup. A friend goes all out with lemongrass, fish sauce and other ingredients for a full-on Thai experience. But you can start here and then take it where you will. The potatoes make for a creamy soup and is a good option if you want to go vegan, as many squash soups call for some cream.

thai-squash-soup1

Recipe: Asian-inspired Winter Squash Soup

1 carrot, chopped

1 celery, chopped

1 medium onion, chopped

1/4 t hot red pepper flakes

2 T olive oil

1 1/2 to 2 lbs. winter squash (delicata, butternut or your favorite)*
or about 4 or 5 cups cubed squash, peeled, seeded and cut into 1/2-inch cubes

2 small to medium potatoes, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch cubes (yukon gold work well)

1 1/2 T fresh grated ginger

1 to 1 1/2 t salt, or to taste

1/2 t cumin

boiling water or stock*

1 cup coconut milk

Optional: mix juice of half a lime in 1/2 cup of sour cream or plain yogurt for garnish.

Directions:

Heat the oil in a stock pot and add the carrot, celery, onion and red pepper. Saute on low heat for about 10 minutes till soft. Add the squash and potatoes along with grated ginger, salt and cumin. Pour in boiling water or vegetable stock to just cover squash. Bring to a boil, then lower heat and simmer for about 20 minutes or until squash is soft.

Allow the soup to cool a bit. Then, working in batches, puree the mixture and return it to a soup pot. If the mixture is too think to easily puree, add a bit of hot water or stock. Once the soup is returned to the pot, stir in the coconut milk and simmer a few minutes more. This soup is best made a day ahead to let the flavors meld. Adjust the seasoning if necessary. Drizzle the lime/sourcream on top and serve.

Download a PDF of the recipe.

Perhaps I should look at my miniscule vegetable garden more often. If I had, I might have been able to rescue my broccoli rabe from devastation. The plants were growing like nobody’s business but were riddled with, ahem, worm poo, so badly that I yanked out all the plants. The tender buds were gone but fortunately my rainbow chard remained in all its colorful glory.

rabeBut I commend the chubby green critters on their taste. Broccoli rabe, (also known as rapini, cime di rapa and raab, among others) is in the turnip cultivar group. It’s small broccoli-like heads are surrounded by a lot of leaves, all edible. It has a slightly bitter, nutty taste and is a good source of vitamins A, C, and K, as well as potassium, calcium and iron. I have noticed that sometimes it is much more bitter than at others. It certainly has kick. It is not to be confused with broccolini.

I grew up eating it at my Italian grandmother’s in Brooklyn, NY. It was usually swimming in olive oil, sometimes with a little red pepper flake. In all, it was an odd thing for a kid to like. But I’ve always welcomed unusual flavors to my palette. I figure I can decide later not to eat it again.

While in southern Italy in Puglia in 2006, I ate the region’s signature dish “Orecchiette con Cime di Rapa” (recipe below). I can think of few better things to fatten up on at this time of year. Orrechiette means “little ear” and is shaped as such. The Italians are big on food rules, so I never stray from this pasta shape in this dish. If they say it holds the sauce better than another shape, who am I to question?

Eating this dish is, in part, an act of keeping alive my food experiences in southern Italy. It’s hearty and uncomplicated. It also qualifies as a one-dish meal and is a good way to eat a vegetable that might get overlooked. I revisit this dish enough that I often wonder if rabe growers noticed a spike in sales in the last couple years.

I can imagine this dish served with a roasted beet salad, not only for a flavor contrast but also for color. But it can stand alone. Served with a wine from that region, like a Salice Salentino, it’s perfection. A red can hold up to this dish.

There are variations on this recipe, including adding sausage. Most recipes call for boiling the rabe. I prefer to saute it. I found no references to sprinkling fine breadcrumbs on top but it was served this way in Italy and the crunch adds dimension. (In Portland, Pasta Works sells bags of fine breadcrumbs that they make and process themselves.)

Recipe: Orecchiette con Cime di Rapa

For 4 people

1 large bunch rabe (It cooks down so you could use 2 lbs. with no problem.)

1 lb. orecchiette

4 T olive oil, or as much as needed

1 or 2 cloves garlic, crushed

5 to 8 anchovies (fear not the anchovy)

1/4 tsp. red pepper flakes (or more to taste)

1/2 cup reserved pasta cooking water

salt to taste

fine unseasoned bread crumbs for garnish

Directions:

I get the water boiling and have the rabe washed and chopped. The cook time for the pasta and rabe is about the same so I saute the rabe just as I am putting the pasta on. Trim a bit off the ends of the rabe. The stalks are tender so don’t waste them. Cut the rabe in approximately 1- to 2-inch chunks. Wash the rabe in a bowl or salad spinner. Drain, but there’s no need to completely dry the rabe. The water left on the leaves helps it to steam a bit.

Heat the olive oil in a large skillet, add the crushed garlic, anchovies and red pepper flake. Saute for a few minutes till anchovies are melted, working them with a wooden spoon to break them up. Don’t let the garlic brown. In the meantime, add the pasta to salted boiling water and follow the box directions for cooking. Reserve 1/2 cup of the pasta cooking water about midway and set aside.

Add the chopped rabe to the skillet. It will seem like too much to fit in the pan but it will wilt quickly. You may need to add it in bunches. You might put stems in first, then add the greens a few minutes later. It is done when a fork goes easily into a stem, approximately 10 minutes. Add salt to taste but remember the anchovies have a lot of salt, so be careful.

Drain the pasta and add it to the skillet with the rabe. Combine the mixture well and add some of the reserved pasta water. The starch in the water interacts with the olive oil making a nice thick sauce. Let this cook down for just a couple minutes. Add more olive oil if necessary.

Sprinkle with the bread crumbs and serve hot. Buon appetito!