Cavatelli with rapini

By Rosa Marinuzzi
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Cavatelli pasta dough:

  • All-purpose flour, bread or semolina flour are all options
  • Warm water
  • 1 teaspoon salt

Cavatelli with rapini:

  • 2 pints of cherry tomatoes
  • 455 grams broccoli rabe approximately 2 bunches
  • 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
  • 6 garlic cloves smashed
  • 455 grams Cavatelli pasta
  • Pasta water
  • Pecorino Romano cheese to taste
  • Extra virgin olive oil to drizzle
  • Garnish with fresh basil leaves optional


  1. Trim the stems of the broccoli rabe, anywhere from two to five centimeters.
  2. Wash broccoli rabe properly.
  3. Over high heat, bring a large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. 
  4. Add the broccoli rabe and cook until tender. This should take four to five minutes.
  5. Drain broccoli rabe in a sieve.
  6. Use scissors to roughly cut up the broccoli rabe. Set aside.
  7. Bring large pot of salted water to a rolling boil. Please note that you can use the same water used to cook the broccoli rabe.
  8. While waiting for the water to boil, drizzle olive oil in a large skillet over medium heat.
  9. Sauté smashed garlic for one to two minutes. Add all halved cherry tomatoes.
  10. Add the broccoli rabe to the sauce pan and sauté for a few minutes.
  11. Add the cavatelli to the salted boiling water. Homemade cavatelli take only a few minutes to cook. When they float to the top, they are done. 
  12. Meanwhile, increase the heat (of the broccoli rabe) to medium high Simmer until most of the liquid has evaporated and the broccoli rabe becomes tender. Feel free to add a little more pasta water if the broccoli rabe look a little dry.
  13. Drain the cavatelli (reserve some pasta water).
  14. Toss together with the broccoli rabe (add some reserved pasta water if dish looks a bit dry).
  15. Place on serving dish and drizzle with olive oil.
  16. (Optional) Sprinkle with Pecorino cheese and garnish with fresh basil leaves.

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