Broccoli Rabe and Broccoli

If broccoli rabe isn’t available is broccoli a good substitute?

I was wanting to make this recipe:Broccoli Rabe, White Bean, and Fontina Pasta that I got off of MSN. However since Broccoli Rabe isn’t available at my grocery store and I don’t have the time to grow it, I was wondering if regular broccoli would be a good subsitute or perhaps something else. I’m very much admittily ignorant in this regards.

Broccoli Rabe, White Bean, and Fontina Pasta

8 ounce(s) whole-wheat shells, fusilli or chiocciole
1 bunch(es) broccoli rabe, trimmed and cut into 1-inch pieces
1 1/2 cup(s) vegetable broth, or reduced-sodium chicken broth
1 tablespoon(s) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoon(s) extra-virgin olive oil
4 clove(s) garlic, minced
1 can(s) cannellini beans, rinsed
2 tablespoon(s) red-wine vinegar
1/4 teaspoon(s) salt
1/4 teaspoon(s) freshly ground pepper
1/2 cup(s) shredded fontina cheese
2/3 cup(s) toasted breadcrumbs, optional


1.Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add pasta and cook, stirring occasionally, according to package directions. Stir in broccoli rabe (or spinach) during the last 2 to 3 minutes. Drain. Dry the pot.
2.Whisk broth and flour in a small bowl until smooth. Heat oil in the pot over medium-high heat. Add garlic and cook, stirring constantly, until fragrant, about 30 seconds. Add the broth mixture and bring to a simmer, whisking constantly, until it thickens, 3 to 4 minutes. Add beans, vinegar, salt and pepper and the pasta and broccoli rabe (or spinach). Cook, stirring, until the mixture is heated through, about 1 minute. Remove from the heat; add cheese, stirring until it melts. Serve immediately, topped with toasted breadcrumbs, if using.