Using fall and winter vegetables: Broccoli
This is the first post in my “Using fall and winter vegetables” series. Each post profiles a fall/winter vegetable and features a recipe. Stay tuned for more!
Broccoli: that mysterious vegetable you refused to eat as a child due to its resemblance to miniature trees, alien tonsils and the color of that slime they used on “Double Dare 2000.” (right??)
In fact, broccoli is quite underrated. It remains in season in many areas throughout the summer, fall and winter – so it’s usually available at times when you’re at a loss for produce.
Health-wise, broccoli packs a punch. Not only is it rich in antioxidants and phytochemicals that are good for your immune system, but research has shown that it can slow the growth of cancer cells and block carcinogens.
Broccoli’s non-domineering taste lends itself to versatility in a number of recipes. I’m a big fan of Williams-Sonoma’s “New Flavors for Vegetables”; it features recipes for vegetables separated by season as well as a chart for tracking vegetable seasonality.
I also frequently use recipes from Melissa Joulwan’s “Well Fed” cookbooks. Whether or not you adhere to the paleo diet (I attempt to), these books feature lots of great vegetable recipes as well as homemade sauces.
In fact, her “Well Fed 2” cookbook has an entire section that discusses broccoli’s importance along with several ways to dress it up.
Pizzas are a great way to empty your refrigerator of nutritious produce. This week I made a low-carb “Meatza pie” using our good friend broccoli.
The recipe, which is from Joulwan’s first “Well Fed” cookbook, can feature any combination of toppings you want on top of a ground beef “crust.” My pizza included mozzarella cheese, pepperoni, spinach, fresh basil, broccoli, mushrooms and black olives.
Push away those doubts and give broccoli some love this winter!