The latest happy-hour craze is aperitivo: a civilized couple of hours at the end of the workday during which you can sip a glass of wine and nibble a snack. At I Trulli, in Murray Hill, guests are served a small platter of cured meat, cheese, and crostino. Now, wouldn’t that make you want to stay for dinner? Chef Patti Jackson hopes you will, and offers her recipe for Cavatelli with Broccoli Rabe and Toasted Almonds to entice you.
“I love this dish because of its simplicity, both of the ingredients and flavors,” says Jackson. “It really reminds me of the reasons why I love Italian food.”
Cavatelli with Broccoli Rabe and Toasted Almonds
2 cups all-purpose flour
1 cup hot water
1/4 tsp. salt
1 bunch broccoli rabe, leaves and florets removed, stems cut into 1-inch pieces
1/2 cup almonds, toasted
In a large bowl, mix together the flour, water, and salt using the dough attachment of a stand mixer to form an elastic dough. Cover the dough well, and allow it to rest 10 minutes. Cut the dough into four pieces, covering three of them and rolling out the remaining piece into a half-inch-thick rope. Cut the rope into one-inch pieces, and, using two fingers, drag each dough piece across your work surface to form a cylindrical shape. Repeat with the remaining dough, placing finished pieces on a sheet pan.
Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli rabe stems, and cook for five minutes. Add the leaves and florets, and cook five minutes more. Toss in the cavatelli, and cook until the pasta bobs to the surface. Drain it well, and place the pasta in a serving bowl. Toss it with olive oil, sprinkle with toasted almonds, and serve.