Thursday, January 9, 2014

31 Days of Green: Day 9 Broccoli

When I was a kid the only way I would eat broccoli was cooked to a soft mush and smothered in fake cheese. I didn’t fall in love with broccoli until I was almost an adult and my grandfather made roasted broccoli with asiago cheese. Now I’m pretty sure anything with asiago cheese on it will be delicious but that wasn’t what struck me about the dish. The roasted broccoli was flavorful and sweet and not at all mushy. We eat a lot of broccoli in this house because it is so versatike. We like to make gluten free pizza crust,  add it to quiches and stir fry’s, broccoli soup, or chopped up raw on a salad. I like this green because it is pretty approachable. Most people have had broccoli and at least have some idea of how to handle it. It is also high in fiber, vitamin C, and folate. Of course it has many other vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. You can read more about all that here.

I like to buy my broccoli from the farmers market because fresh broccoli always taste better. A frugal chef tip: If you buy broccoli with the long stems you can use them to make stock or you can use a vegetable peeler to peel off the leathery skin and sauté up the stem meat. It is super sweet and tender and you can eat most of the way down the stem, you will be able to feel when it is getting tough. Now back to that roast broccoli. When I made this for a pre-lunch snack (yes we eat before eating!) Mercury fell in love. I was shocked by how much enjoyed it, and I hope you will too!

 Garlic Roasted Broccoli

Gluten Free, Vegan
Serves 2

1 head of broccoli
4 cloves of garlic
2-4 tbl of olive oil

Sliced garlic
Rise your broccoli and trim off the florets. You can save the stem for other uses (see above). Cut the florets in half or in quarters, just depending on what size you want your pieces. Peel the garlic and slice; I was able to slice each clove into about 8 strips. Add the broccoli and garlic to a bowl and toss in olive oil. I didn’t actually measure but I had a pretty good eye and it was about 3 tablespoons to get it lightly coated. Spread onto a parchment lined baking sheet and baked on 350oF for 30 minutes until the garlic and broccoli start to get a little crisp. Serve warm.


Notes and Substitutions

  • I haven’t tried it but I imagine melted butter or melted coconut oil would work.
  • You can roast many types of veggies this way.
  • The garlic isn’t totally necessary but if you haven’t had roasted garlic you are definitely missing out.
  • I don’t add salt to this dish because it is so flavorful on its own. Taste before you salt!

What is your favorite way to prepare broccoli?

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