Italian Sausage And Broccoli Rabe

Adapted from Melissa Hamilton | Christopher Hirsheimer | Canal House N° 8: Pronto | Andrews McMeel Publishing, 2013

Faicco’s is an Italian butcher shop in New York City that specializes in all things pork. Their display case has more appeal than the windows at Bergdorf Goodman. We can never resist buying their Italian sausage coils when we visit; the narrow casings make the prettiest spirals. If you can’t find coils, just buy your favorite Italian sausage links.–Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer

LC Brocco-What?! Note

Broccoli rabe. Rapini. Broccoletti. Same thing. Just a public service announcement in case you’re wondering “brocco-what?!” as you wander the produce aisles of your grocery store.

  • Quick Glance
  • 25 M
  • 45 M
  • Serves 4


  • For the Italian sausage
  • 1 coil Italian sausage (1 1/2 to 2 pounds)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1/4 cup cold water, plus more as needed
  • For the broccoli rabe
  • 1 bunch broccoli rabe (rapini) or Broccolini (a trademarked hybrid of broccoli and Chinese kale)
  • 1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil, plus more for drizzling
  • 1 clove garlic, thinly sliced
  • 1/4 to 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • Salt, to taste
  • 1/4 cup cold water


  • Cook the Italian sausage
  • 1. Prick the sausage in a few places with the tip of a sharp knife to keep the casing from splitting as it cooks. Heat the olive oil in a heavy, large skillet over medium heat. Add the sausage and water, cover, and cook until the sausage begins to brown on the bottom, about 15 minutes.
  • 2. Carefully turn the sausage over and, if the skillet is dry, add a splash or two more water. Cover and continue to cook until the sausage begins to brown on the other side, about 10 minutes. Uncover and keep cooking until the water evaporates and the sausage is well browned on the outside and cooked through on the inside, 5 to 10 minutes. (The sausage will brown quickly once the water evaporates. You can nudge the sausage a little here and there to be certain it doesn’t stick to the skillet.)
  • Cook the broccoli rabe
  • 3. Meanwhile, trim the thick stems from the broccoli rabe or Broccolini and discard or reserve for another use. Rinse the broccoli rabe or Broccolini and shake off any excess water but do not dry it.
  • 4. Toss the olive oil, garlic, and red pepper flakes in a large skillet and heat over medium heat just until fragrant, 1 to 2 minutes. Add the broccoli rabe or Broccolini, a generous pinch salt, and the water, then cover, and cook, turning the broccoli rabe or Broccolini as it begins to wilt, until it’s tender but still bright green, about 5 minutes. Uncover and cook until the water evaporates, 3 to 5 minutes. Drizzle with olive oil and season to taste with salt.
  • 5. Serve the sausage and broccoli rabe together, preferably on a rustic wooden cutting board.

Italian Sausage and Broccoli Rabe Recipe © 2013 Melissa Hamilton and Christopher Hirsheimer. Photo © 2013 Christopher Hirsheimer. All rights reserved.

If you make this recipe, snap a photo and hashtag it #LeitesCulinaria. We’d love to see your creations on Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter.

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