People have been eating broccoli for decades. The name comes from brocco in Italian, which means “tender shoot”. Broccoli is closely related to, and they both make quick and easy soups or a crunchy addition to a stir fry or salad.
The florets need cooking, although only for a short time. You can peel the stems and slice them to use raw in a salad or in casseroles.
Keep in mind
If you grow your own broccoli, be prepared for new shoots to appear after you have picked them. They won’t be as big or compact as the first crop but they’re just as good.
How to cook broccoli
Cook broccoli carefully by steaming, stir frying or parboiling, in other words only cook it very briefly. If you’re not making broccoli soup, the florets need to be soft all the way through.
Steam broccoli! If you don’t have a steamer, it’s fine to use a saucepan insert or a sieve. Divide the broccoli into even-sized florets and peel and slice the stem. Steam for a few minutes and sprinkle with a little sea salt afterwards.
Make broccoli soup: Fry chopped onion and garlic (and maybe some celeriac and thyme), pour on some stock and add the broccoli, cut into small pieces. Boil for 10 minutes and then run through a food processor. A splash of cream lifts the flavor.
Broccoli goes perfectly in a stir fry and with pasta, where the florets can cook in the pasta water. Put them in towards the end so they don’t lose their crunch.
Grilled broccoli looks good and tastes good too. Cut the broccoli lengthwise, parboil in lightly salted water and grill in a pan or put on the grill. Garlic butter or aioli go well with it.
Broccoli soup with very freshly ground black pepper.