Rocket/aragula/rucola/rucoli/rugula/colewort/roquette…. these are all the different names I got when trying to search what the most common spelling for rocket/roquette is!
However you spell it, it’s an acquired taste. M thinks it’s far too bitter (he may or may not refer to it as ‘ass lettuce’ … ), but I think it’s beautiful and peppery.
I always have a bag wilting in my fridge after making grand plans to use it and not incorporating it as M just can’t handle it. Below are the 10 most common ways I make sure it doesn’t end up on the compost heap… (usually when M is late from work/out or in my lunch…)
10 WAYS TO USE ROCKET
1. In pasta – just add it near the end as you would spinach to wilt and toss through. I love it in a pasta of sliced fried off capsicum, chilli and garlic. Rocket loves parmesan so it goes fantastically in pasta.
2. As a salad – if like M you think it is a little strong, try a dressing that contains honey. A reduced balsamic or french mustard/honey/apple cider vinegar/olive oil dressing on rocket with some sliced strawberries is a favourite of mine.
3. Pesto – Rocket gives a gorgeous peppery flavour in pesto. I usually do still include some basil as I love basil, but as rocket loves parmesan cheese it is right at home – plus, with all the amazing vitamins and minerals in rocket (B6, C, K, A, calcium.. the list goes on), it’ll add a little nutrition boost to your bruschetta!
4. On pizza – Once you’ve made your pizza base, roast some slices of pumpkin to use with feta and rocket as a topping. I like to add some before baking so it goes all wilted/crispy/delicious and then some fresh just before serving.
5. As a sauteed side – As you would spinach at breakfast, cook your rocket in a pan for 20 seconds with some olive oil and chilli, or garlic, or regular basil pesto….
6. In soup – I’ve never made a rocket soup (and I’m not sure I’ll be trying), but I am a fan of finely chopping some rocket, as I would herbs, to top a root vegetable soup (pumpkin, carrot and ginger, sweet potato…). I love the peppery rocket with the greek yoghurt I am always dolloping on soups as well.
7. For breakfast – Cook up with your mushrooms or add to your omelette. A little fry up involving eggs with a side of mushrooms/rocket/feta is delicious.
8. Frittata or Quiche – Rocket is beautiful in quiches and frittata’s as they can be quite heavy and the rocket cuts through the pastry/cream/cheese flavour. Once again especially good if it’s a quiche involving root vegetables.
9. With Seafood – In a salad with an oily fish such as smoked salmon, or on the side of your fish and chips covered in lemon, or as the base of a calamari salad, or tossed through your spaghetti marinara before serving…..
10. In risotto – again as you would spinach and if you’re adding a heap of parmesan at the end even better. Mushroom and rocket risotto is great, but if you can do a risotto of roasted beetroots and rocket – even better (and I don’t need the parmesan for that one). Maybe toss some pine nuts in, too..
Have I convinced anyone that rocket is worth using?
M asked what I was writing about as I typed up this post..
Me – “You know that 10 ways on how to use something? Well I am doing one on rocket and I am up to number 7. I am struggling with getting to 10 with ways other people would like it…”
M – “That’s because rocket is shit”.