December brings to mind the smell of pine, twinkle of holiday lights and warmth of
spending time with loved ones. One thing that you may be missing though? The wide array and
seemingly never-ending bounty of summer produce. Although we’ve bade farewell to berries and
sayonara to stone fruit, December brings its own abundance of hearty greens and delectable
The best way to highlight these flavors? Mix them all up for a big pot of this winter farmers’
market pasta, courtesy of Annie Somerville, executive chef at Greens Restaurant, renowned for
seasonal, vegetarian feasting. This is also the perfect way to kickstart your 2018 resolutions,
whether that involves eating less meat, incorporating more local, seasonal produce or turning
your weekly grocery store run into the weekly farmers’ market run.
If you’re not sure of which market to head to, be sure to look up the Pacific Coast Farmers’Market Association. With over 50 weekly markets throughout the Bay Area, PCFMA is the
largest association of its kind on the West Coast and the oldest in the country, founded in 1988.
They seek to empower California farmers through the markets, which create opportunities for
farmers to sell directly to and interact with their consumers. Find your local market on the
PCFMA website, and don’t miss their “Eat” section featuring even more recipes to highlight
1 cup Italian butter beans, sorted and soaked overnight (or any large white bean)
1 bay leaf
2 fresh thyme sprigs, plus 1 teaspoon chopped leaves
2 fresh oregano sprigs, plus 1 teaspoon chopped leaves
3 fresh sage leaves
24 whole garlic cloves
¾ cup extra virgin olive oil
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
12 oz broccoli rabe (tough lower stems trimmed and cut into bite-size pieces)
8 oz orecchiette
1½ cups sliced spring onions, white and light green parts only
Crushed red pepper flakes, to taste
1 cup sun-dried tomatoes
¼ cup white wine
Grated Pecorino Romano cheese for serving
Step 1: Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Step 2: Rinse and drain the beans. Combine with 8 cups water and the bay leaf, thyme
sprigs, oregano sprigs and sage leaves in a medium saucepan and bring to a boil. Lower
the heat and simmer, uncovered, until the beans are tender but still hold their shape,
about 1½ hours.
Step 3: While the beans are cooking, place the garlic and olive oil in a small baking dish
and sprinkle lightly with salt and pepper. Cover and bake until tender, about 25 minutes.
Use a slotted spoon to remove the garlic cloves and place in a small bowl. Reserve the oil.
Step 4: Remove the bay leaf and herb sprigs from the beans and season the beans with 1
tablespoon garlic oil, 1 teaspoon of salt and a pinch of pepper.
Step 5: Bring 2 large pots of salted water to a boil. Cook the broccoli rabe in one
pot until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Drain and rinse under cold water.
Step 6: Cook the orecchiette in the other pot until barely tender, 8 minutes.
Step 7: While the orecchiette is cooking, heat 2 tablespoons of the garlic oil in a large
Dutch oven over medium-high heat. Add the onions, ½ teaspoon salt, a pinch of pepper
and crushed red pepper to taste. Cook over medium heat until wilted, 2 to 3 minutes,
then add the sun-dried tomatoes and cook 1 minute more. Add the wine and cook until
the pan is nearly dry, about 3 minutes.
Step 8: Lower the heat and add the beans and about 3 cups of the bean broth, the
orecchiette, reserved roasted garlic, broccoli rabe and the remaining garlic oil. Cook over
medium-low heat until the broth is slightly thickened, 8 to 10 minutes.
Step 9: Remove from the heat and stir in the chopped thyme and oregano. Taste and
adjust seasoning. Garnish with the Pecorino Romano.