Monday, September 03, 2012

Roasted Broccoli

We had some broccoli in the fridge that needed to be cooked before it went bad, and I wanted to do something other than the usual blanch and quick sauté. I remembered reading a recipe for broccoli "cooked forever" somewhere on the Internets--I know, it sounds disgusting, but it's supposed to taste terrific. Possibly as good as my grandmother's green beans, cooked for hours, which turned out sweet and mellow and buttery. I used to eat them by the bowlful for dinner.

I see you--yes you--over there, sneering. You just go on ahead and continue eating your under-cooked beans that make squeaking sounds when you chew. Not particularly tasty, are they? Just...squeaky.


Back to broccoli. I'm just going to have to take the recipe creator's word that long-cooking the stuff makes for deliciousness. When I found the recipe, I saw that it required 1 cup of olive oil. Sorry, but I'd rather spend that $5 on something less-wasteful (I am, after all, one of the 99%).

Instead, I decided to oven-roast my broccoli. The Amateur Gourmet raved over Ina Garten's recipe, so I did a similar riff, tossing the broccoli florets with salt, a few tablespoons of olive oil, a fat clove of sliced garlic, and a pinch of red pepper flakes before popping it into a 425F oven for about 25 minutes. (On a foil-lined baking sheet. I did not just throw the broccoli into the oven like that.) When the broccoli was done, I topped it with a squeeze of lemon juice and a handful of grated Parm.

The result: perfectly tender-crisp vegetables with nice caramelized bits, and a house that reeked of roasted garlic (not necessarily a bad thing). It was pretty terrific, and I'm betting that cauliflower would be just as good, if not better.

Once the weather gets cooler, I see myself roasting vegetables in this manner more often.

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