Yield: 4 servings
Time: 30 minutes
A vegetarian choice or a great way to enhance dinner. Easy to throw together and full of contrasting flavors and textures. I much prefer broccolini than broccoli rabe or regular broccoli. Broccolini’s mild and sweeter taste is a perfect contrast to the sweet and sour Salsa Rossa.
- 1 cup (225 g) sun-dried tomatoes (not oil-packed)
- about 2 cups (500 ml) of water
- 1 roasted red pepper, coarsely chopped
- 1/4 cup (60 g) pepperoncini, chopped
- 3 Tbsp red wine vinegar
- 1/2 cup (125 ml) olive oil
- 1 tsp dried oregano
- 1-2 tsp sugar or to taste
- salt and freshly ground pepper
- 1 lb (450 g) broccolini
- 2 Tbsp extra-virgin olive oil
- coarse sea salt to taste
- 1/2 tsp red pepper flakes for sprinkling
- grated Parmesan cheese for serving
Preheat oven to 400ºF/200ºC. Bring water to a boil in a large saucepan. Blanch broccolini for about 2 minutes. Drain broccolini and run it under cold water to arrest cooking. Drain again and pat it dry on paper towels. In a large bowl, toss broccolini with olive oil, sea salt, and red pepper flakes. Arrange broccolini on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet. Roast for about 10-15 minutes or until stems are easily pierced with a knife. Do not let broccolini florets get too charred. Remove from oven and keep it warm.
While the broccolini is roasting, prepare the Salsa Rossa. Bring water to a boil in a saucepan. Remove from the heat. Add sundried tomatoes and let them soak for about 15 minutes. Drain tomatoes and save the soaking water. Chop tomatoes, roasted pepper, pepperoncini and vinegar and add it to the blender. Pulse the tomato mix once or twice. Add enough soaking liquid to obtain a smooth puree. With the blender still running, add the olive oil until all incorporated. Transfer tomato puree to a small saucepan. Add oregano and sugar. Adjust seasoning and thickness of the salsa to your taste. Salsa Rossa should have a balance between tart and sweet with just a peppery kick.
Pour Salsa Rossa on a plate, and arrange broccolini on top of it. Sprinkle with Parmesan.
Serve warm or at room temperature.