Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Broccoli for the discerning

Something that makes you gassy, smells a little stinky while cooking, tastes terribly bland raw, and needs lots of seasoning to be palatable? No thanks!
That's how I felt about broccoli for ages (although I confess I do like it in Chinese food, the kind at greasy buffets, drenched in MSG-laden sauce).

But really? Broccoli? As a side dish? F0r regular dinners?! I've steered clear.

I was a little stressed about it because I try to be healthy, and broccoli has long been touted as a "super food."

Then I found this super simple recipe. Actually, to make a short story long, ever since I roasted Brussels sprouts this way (with shallots mixed in: Heaven!) one Thanksgiving, I've been sold on the method.

It's so simple. Regardless of what you're roasting -- zucchini, bell peppers, eggplant, tomatoes, etc. -- all you do is toss with some olive oil -- enough to coat it nicely -- and roast briefly in a very hot oven. For broccoli, that means at 450 degrees for 10 minutes, stirring once, halfway through cooking. The florets will brown nicely, giving those fumey, green mini-tree-looking things a whole lot of flavor. At the end of this, lemon adds the final touch.

Here's the recipe. (For info on the rest of the meal, pictured above with spicy tofu packets, "tune in" tomorrow!)

Roasted broccoli with lemon (2-3 side servings)

One bunch of broccoli, tough stems cut off

1 tablespoon olive oil

1 tablespoon lemon juice -- about half a lemon

salt and pepper, to taste

1.) Pre-heat oven to 450 degrees.

2.) Toss broccoli with oil and spread onto a non-stick roasting pan.

3.) Roast for 5 minutes, then remove from oven and turn the broccoli florets, brown side facing up.

4.) Roast for 5 more minutes.

5.) Remove from oven, add salt and pepper, and drizzle lemon on top.

Q: How do you fix a broken pizza?

A: With tomato paste. (from the Scholastic "ROFL" book)


jelymo said...

i love me some broccoli-(thinking about dana carvey singing about choppin' broccoli). i like mine steamed and seasoned with bragg's. why do all my food stories involve people from SNL?

Nicole said...

I am helping my mom figure out the ins and outs of posting comments on a blog. She lives in Germany, so it's hard to help her "online," when I can't see what she sees on the computer screen. Anyway... here's one comment from her:

"You asked for a great Broccoli recipe. I just love my plain one and you might too.
For 2 persons:Blanch 1 2/2 lb of Broccoli for 5 Min.
Drain and arrange in an oven-proof dish.
Take 1 cup of bread crumbs, 2 cloves garlic, squeezed, 2 TB spoons of Extra virgin olive oil little salt and pepper.
Sautee/semi brown ingredients in a small skillet, stirring occasionally. Dribble over broccoli.
Push into hot oven for 10 min. before serving.
Does that recipe make any sense to you?
Schöne Gruesse,Deine Mom"