This particular creation or creations started up as a compromise.
I am rather fond of broccoli, so is my boyfriend, only I like it cooked he likes it raw… I basically had to find a way that we both could enjoy this lovely and cheap(!) vegetable. The secret, if you can call it that, is to treat the stems and the florets differently, both when it comes to cooking them and dressing them up. This makes perfect sense really the stems are harder and need more time to reach that sweet “al dente” texture you are looking for, whilst the florets need just a short trip into boiling water before they are ready. They also soak up a lot more flavour from a dressing so I chose to incorporate more into the actual dressing for these, and add extra items to the stem salad.
Here’s what you need:
Ginger Lemony Broccoli Florets
Florets from one head of broccoli
approximately 2 cm chopped ginger
1 clove of garlic
1 piece of lemongrass
1-2 ts soy sauce
juice of 1 lemon
3-4 T olive oil
1. Boil up a pan of water with a pinch of salt
2. Add the florets and let them cook for about 5 minutes
3. Drain the florets and drop them into a bowl of ice water to stop the cooking, you want to make sure they retain some crunch!
4. Finely chop the garlic, lemongrass and ginger
5. Mix them with soy sauce, the lemon juice and olive oil.
6. Let the dressing sit until the broccoli has cooled down, then drain them again and mix it all up!
Sweet and Crunchy Broccoli Stems
Stem from one head of broccoli cut into bite size pieces
Handful of raisins
Same amount of sliced almonds
1 ts sesame seeds
1ts black sesame seeds (you can just use twice the amount of normal sesame seeds, the black ones are just really pretty…)
1. Boil up a pan of water with a pinch of salt.
2. Add the stems and cook till al dente, about 10 minutes. Naturally how long this takes depends on the size of the pieces.
3. Drain the broccoli, these are more robust than the florets so ice water is not necessary.
4. Make the dressing by mixing 2 parts oil with 1 part vinegar and adding the raisins, almonds and sesame seeds. If the raisins are big I tend to chop them, and if they are dry put them in a mug and cover them with boiling water for about 10 minutes so that they plump up. Totally worth the time!
5. Mix it all up and enjoy it, I think this salad is nice both at room temperature and cold.
Although the floret salad certainly is the looker in this game, I think this salad might just have my heart as when it comes to flavour. It pairs beautifully with anything salty and smoky…
I am not saying that it will necessarily improve your cooking skills, but listening to this song whilst cooking this certainly won’t make the experience less enjoyable…
’twas a lovely day today… Sunglasses and 3/4 length sleeves, oh yes!