I have never been a big fan of broccoli in large clusters. How do you cut the stalk carefully without some part of the broccoli flying across the room, not to mention how hard it can be to simply eat the stalk...if it isn't properly cooked. Can you believe the stalk (the hardest part to eat) has the most fiber and the leaves are highest in cell-protecting antioxidants, vitamins E and K, and calcium? What about the leaves? Do you eat them? Well, I had never thought about eating them. I have always pulled them off when washing the broccoli. This just shows that everyone can learn something new daily.
If you are like me and have always discarded the stems, I did a little research as to how we can best use the broccoli stems. The stems contain slightly more calcium, iron and Vitamin C per gram, as compared to the florets. Lets see if any of these options entice you to eat the broccoli stems!
Here are some ways to use the stems:
Use the broccoli stems by cutting the stems into smaller pieces and use them in a vegetable stir-fry dish.
When making vegetables soup cut the stem into small pieces and add them in with the other vegetables.
Add the cut up stems to your salads.
Cut the stems lengthwise and serve will dip like carrot sticks
Ferment the stems like pickles (I never would have thought of this!) A recipe for fermented stems is attached below.
After learning more about the stems, I think that I will start cutting them into bit-size pieces and use a freezer bag that I can continually add the stems to so I can use them when cooking soups or other vegetable dishes.
Garlic Parmesan Roasted Broccoli
This is one of my husband's favorite recipes that I make. It is easy, yummy and everyone loves it...even my grandson!
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 10 minutes
Total Time: 15 minutes
24 ounces broccoli florets - about 5 cups
3 tablespoons olive oil
4 cloves garlic, minced
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper, to taste
1/4 cup freshly grated Parmesan
Juice of 1 lemon
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F. Lightly oil a baking sheet or coat with nonstick spray.
Place broccoli florets in a single layer onto the prepared baking sheet. Add olive oil and garlic; season with salt and pepper, to taste. Gently toss to combine.
Place into oven and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until tender.
Serve immediately, sprinkled with Parmesan and lemon juice.