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Puglia: Orecchiette with Turnip Greens

Orecchiette with turnip greens

The “Orecchiette with Cime di Rapa” is one of the representative dishes of the Apulian cuisine, a preparation that includes few ingredients that create a combination of unforgettable flavors: oil, garlic, anchovies, chili peppers and turnip greens with their bitter taste that is well marries with the other ingredients.

In Puglia the Orecchietta is an institution! It is a kind of pasta made with durum wheat semolina and water which has a certain roughness, a fundamental aspect for collecting the seasoning. Often the Orecchiette are also seasoned with the sauce of another well-known recipe "The chops with sauce", the chop is then placed on top of the pasta thus becoming a single dish rich in the flavors of this beautiful land of southern Italy.

Serving Size 4:

  • 350 g of Orecchiette

  • 400 g of cleaned turnip greens

  • 3 anchovies in oil

  • 1 clove of garlic

  • Extra virgin olive oil

  • Chili pepper to taste

  • Salt

  • Taralli crumbled or breadcrumbs


Clean the turnip greens by removing the hard and thick parts of the stems, keep only the tender leaves and the florets, washed thoroughly.

Bring a pot of water to boil, salt and pour the turnip greens, after 4/5 minutes of cooking add the orecchiette and cook according to the time indicated on the package.

In a large pan, pour oil and brown the garlic with the chilli pepper, add the anchovies, stirring so that they melt, we recommend adding a little cooking water from the turnip greens.

Drain the turnip greens and orecchiette a minute before the indicated time (always keep the cooking water aside to stir), pour them into the spicy seasoning and make sure that they are flavored by mixing. If it remains too dry, add the cooking water that you have kept aside.

Serve with the crumbled tarallo or toast the breadcrumbs in a non-stick pan and then sprinkle over the pasta adding a drizzle of oil.

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