Broccoli is a member of the cabbage family.  Its place of origin is Rome and its Italian name is “broccolo” which means “cabbage sprout”.   It was bred from wild cabbage and then brought to the Americas during the colonial period by Italian immigrants.

Broccoli is an excellent source of immune boosting vitamin C, anti-inflammatory vitamin K, vitamin A, folate, and fiber.  Steaming is the best way to preserve these valuable nutrients.

It is best to store your broccoli in a reusable bag.  Leave it open slightly so as to avoid excess moisture.

When you are ready to cook, rinse the head thoroughly in cold water and cook until crisp-tender.  It should only take about 7 minutes if you are steaming it.

There are, of course, other delicious ways to prepare your broccoli…

You’ll find this nutritious vegetable is wonderful when made into a salad like this one , or simply as a part of a crudites platter.  When serving it this way some people like to blanch it because they think that it will help to preserve its bright color and crunchy texture.  Others think that it will dull the color and soften the texture.  Of course it’s up to you.  Try both ways and see which you like best.

Broccoli is also delicious when roasted.  Wash and dry and cut up into bite size pieces.  Place on a cookie sheet.  I like to line the cookie sheet with parchment paper to avoid sticking.  Toss with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  Roast in a pre-heated 450 degree oven for about 20 minutes or until crispy.

Another enjoyable way to serve it, as a main dish no less, is this recipe from Sara Moulton.  I used to love watching her on the Food Network years ago and am so excited to have found her website.

And for heaven’s sakes don’t let those broccoli stalks go to waste!  You can grate them with your food processor grater blade and add to salads, make a broccoli slaw, or even fritters.

Here is a quick fritter recipe using your excess sourdough starter:

  • 2 cups grated broccoli stalks (you can use any vegetable here)
  • 1 cup sourdough starter
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon smoked paprika

     Combine all the ingredients and mix well.  Heat a skillet and grease with the fat of your choice.  I like to use bacon grease.  Spoon quarter cup size scoops just as if you were making pancakes and cook until bubbly, then flip and cook until done.  Season to taste with salt and pepper if desired. Serve with butter.

The possibilities are endless.  How do you like to prepare your broccoli?

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