What’s in Season – Broccoli!
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This week fresh broccoli is appeared at our local Farmers Market, and you cannot beat fresh local broccoli!! Broccoli has a reputation for being disliked by many people, often considered bland and unappetizing mostly due to frequent overcooking. With a little creativity in the kitchen, you can find that wonderful intersection of extremely good for you and delicious. Whether you’re a broccoli lover or hater, hopefully these broccoli recipes will put you on the path to delicious green living. Among vegetables, broccoli is one of the best choices; it is low in calories but rich in vitamins, minerals, fiber and healthy phytonutrients. Consuming a serving of broccoli daily can improve your nutrient intake and promote your general health and well-being.
My Favorite Roasted Broccoli
(I have shared this one before, but it is super simple and yummy, when I make it, it is gone in a flash!)
4-5 pounds of broccoli (about 2 large heads), cut into florets, be sure they are very dry
5-5 1/2 Tbsp. Olive oil
1 ½ tsp. salt
½ tsp. ground pepper
4 garlic cloves, peeled and sliced
1/3 cup freshly grated Parmesan cheese
Preheat the oven to 425. Lay broccoli florets onto a cookie sheet. Toss with 4 Tbsp. of the olive oil, salt and pepper. Add the garlic cloves. Roast for 20-25 minutes. There will be some browning.
Zest the lemon over the broccoli, then squeeze the juice, over the broccoli. Add the remaining 1 ½ Tbsp. olive oil, toss and sprinkle with 1/3 cup of freshly grated Parmesan cheese.
Mayo Free Broccoli Salad
For the Salad
5 cups broccoli, cut into small florets
½ dried cranberries
½ cup red onion, diced
½ cup cheddar cheese, shredded
¼ cup sunflower seeds, salted and roasted
For the Dressing
1 cup Greek yogurt, plain
2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 ½ tablespoons local honey
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
Start by cooking your bacon until it is super crispy. Set it aside while it cools.
Next chop your broccoli. I like to make sure it is chopped into very small uniform pieces. I also like to cut off most of the stalk because the floret has a better texture and absorbs more flavor. Add your chopped broccoli to a large bowl.
Add dried cranberries, diced red onion, cheddar cheese, and sunflower seeds to the large bowl with the broccoli. Give it all a quick stir.
In a small bowl, whisk together the Greek yogurt, apple cider vinegar, honey, Dijon mustard and salt and pepper. Pour the dressing over the broccoli mixture and mix well.
If you are going to serve it immediately, crumble your bacon and add it to the salad. If you are going to store it in the fridge and serve it later, crumble the bacon and store the bacon in a container to add when you are ready to serve. Enjoy!
Serves 6, each serving contains; Calories 186, Carbohydrates 22 g., Protein 10 g., Fat 8 g., Sodium 220 mg., Fiber 3 g., Sugar 15 g.
Low Carb Broccoli Cheddar Casserole
1 ½ pounds broccoli florets
8 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature, cut into cubes
¼ cup sour cream
1 cup shredded cheddar cheese
¼ cup shredded Parmesan cheese
2 cloves, garlic, minced
1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste
Crushed red pepper flakes
Preheat oven to 350˚F. Grease a 2.5 quart to 3 quart baking dish with butter and set aside.
In a large skillet, bring 1/2 inch of salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli; cover and cook over high heat until crisp-tender, about 3 to 4 minutes.
Drain and transfer broccoli to prepared baking dish; set aside.
In a mixing bowl combine cream cheese, sour cream, cheddar cheese, parmesan cheese, garlic, Italian Seasoning, salt, and pepper; mix until incorporated.
Add cream cheese mixture to the broccoli and stir until thoroughly combined.
Bake in the oven for 17 to 20 minutes, or until bubbly and lightly browned on top.
Remove from oven and let stand 5 minutes before serving. Optional, garnish with crushed red pepper flakes and serve.
Serves 6, each serving contains; Calories 283, Carbohydrates 10 g. (net Carbs. 7 g.), Protein 12 g., Fat 23 g., Sodium 347 mg., Fiber 3 g., Sugar 4 g.
Easy Vegetable Stir Fry
1 cup onion, sliced
1 clove garlic, minced
1 cup fresh mushrooms, sliced
1 cup carrots, diced or shredded
1 cup cabbage, shredded
1 cup broccoli florets
1 cup yellow squash, cut into half moons
1 cup water chestnuts, sliced and drained, optional
1 cup baby corn, optional
¼ cup of veggie or chicken broth
1 ½ cups all fruit, no added sugar apricot or peach preserves
1 tablespoon soy sauce
1 tablespoon rice vinegar
2 tablespoons corn starch or almond flour
Dice all of the veggies that you plan to use in your stir fry. If you’re using any of the canned Asian vegetables like water chestnuts or baby corn, drain the water from them.
Whisk together all of the sauce ingredients in a medium-size bowl–apricot preserves, soy sauce veggie or chicken broth, rice vinegar, cornstarch or almond flour. Set the sauce to the side.
In a wok or large nonstick skillet, heat 2 tablespoons of broth over medium heat. Add the onion and garlic and sauté for approximately 3-4 minutes until they begin to caramelize. Add extra broth one tablespoon at a time if needed to prevent sticking.
Add all of the other veggies–sliced mushrooms, carrots, cabbage, broccoli, squash, chestnuts and baby corn, and sauté another 3-5 minutes. You want the broccoli to be bright green and all of the vegetables still slightly crisp.
Pour the sauce over the veggies and gently stir. Allow the sauce to thicken slightly. This should only take a minute or so.
Remove from the heat and serve over rice or noodles.
Chicken and Broccoli Casserole
4 cups broccoli florets
½ cup cream cheese, softened
2 tablespoons mayonnaise (if you are going for low carb, use sugar free)
½ cup shredded cheddar
½ teaspoon garlic powder
¼ teaspoon salt
¼ teaspoon black pepper
1 ½ cups cooked chicken, chopped
¼ cup Parmesan cheese, grated
Heat the oven to 375, grease a 9 x 9 casserole dish and set aside.
Start by prepping your broccoli. Put a large saucepan with about 2 inches of water over medium-high heat. Once the water is at a rolling boil, add in the broccoli florets. Let them steam for about 2 minutes or until they are fork tender. Drain the water, return the broccoli to the sauce pan and set aside.
In a large mixing bowl combine the softened cream cheese with the mayo and then stir in the seasonings. Add the cheddar, then the cooked and chopped chicken. Finally, stir in the steamed broccoli and blend it all together.
Pour the chicken and broccoli mixture into the prepared casserole dish and sprinkle with the last 1/4 cup of grated cheese.
Place in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Next, set the oven to broil and broil for 2-3 minutes or until the cheese is bubbling and browning in spots.
Serves 4, each serving contains; Calories 318, Carbohydrates 8 g. Protein 26 g., Fat 21 g., Sodium 489 mg., Fiber 2 g., Sugar 3 g.