Monday, May 7, 2012

Sausage and Broccoli Rabe Casserole - Gluten Free

Sausage and Broccoli Rabe Casserole

This Italian Classic Combo Casserole features sausage and broccoli rabe as its star ingredients.  The dish itself is a fusion between Italy’s classic combination, sausage and broccoli rabe, and the American tradition, the casserole.  With broccoli rabe being touted as a super-food it’s a good idea to work this veggie into the menu.  This dish is the perfect way to introduce broccoli rabe to people that may be unfamiliar with it.  Crumbled sausage and broccoli rabe are sautéed with garlic garlic before being tossed with pasta and a creamy Pecorino béchamel sauce.  The broiler gives it it’s crispy top for an end result that looks more impressive than the effort it took to make.  If you have some extra time, a batch of homemade garlic bread, gluten free of course, would send this one over the edge.    

Sausage and Broccoli Rabe Casserole
Prep time: 10 min
Cook time: 35 min

Ingredients list

  •        1 lb of hot or sweet Italian sausage, casing removed
  •        1 bunch of broccoli rabe, chopped into bite sized pieces
  •        3 cloves of garlic, minced
  •        12 oz of gluten free short pasta, cooked one minute shy of the package instructions
  •        2 cups of low fat milk
  •        2 tbsp butter
  •        2 tbsp cornstarch
  •        ½ cup of Pecorino Romano cheese
  •        salt and pepper, to taste
  •        cayenne pepper and nutmeg, to taste
  •        ½ cup of fresh gluten free breadcrumbs.   
  •        2 tbsp Pecorino Romano cheese
  •        1 tbsp olive oil
  •       Italian seasoning, to taste  

Video Tutorial: 


  1. For the breadcrumb topping, mix the topping ingredients together and set it aside. 
  2. To make the béchamel sauce, in a medium saucepan over a medium-low heat, melt the butter then add the cornstarch and stir until smooth.  Continue stirring for about 3-4 minutes or until it just starts to turn golden and add the milk. 
  3. Continue stirring as you bring the mixture up to a boil, then lower the heat and stir continuously for about 5 minutes or until the sauce has thickened to a consistency that will coat the back of a wooden spoon.
  4. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the cheese, nutmeg, cayenne and salt and pepper then set it aside. 
  5. In a large nonstick skillet crumble and brown the sausage and drain off any excess grease.  Add the garlic and sauté for 1 minute then add the broccoli rabe with some salt and pepper and sauté for 3-4 minutes. 
  6. Add the cooked pasta and béchamel and stir to combine.  .
  7. Transfer the mixture into a greased 9x13 inch casserole dish and broil for 3-5 minutes or until the breadcrumbs are crispy and brown.  Keep an eye on it since everyone’s oven is different.  And then it’s ready to serve.  

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