I was having a little trouble getting my family to eat roasted broccoli, and then I tried a recipe over at Overtime Cook. Miriam’s recipe calls for tossing frozen broccoli florets with a lemon Dijon dressing and then throwing then in hot oven. It was a big hit.
Initially, I was a little dubious about the recipe. The only frozen vegetables that I really like are corn, peas and spinach. I thought the broccoli was going to have an unpleasant waterlogged texture. Fortunately, roasting the frozen broccoli seems to drive off excess water. While the resulting texture is not crisp it isn’t flabby either, and the flavor is excellent.
Another reason the recipe works is the use of a vinaigrette. Usually, when I roast vegetables, I use oil plus spices. I don’t add anything acid like lemon juice or Dijon mustard. It turns out that these ingredients add tremendous flavor. Obvious in retrospect, I know, but I didn’t think of it before.
After making the Dijon broccoli for a few weeks in a row, I decided to branch out a little and I came up with an Asian style twist on the recipe. Instead of a lemon Dijon dressing, I made a dressing with olive oil, soy sauce, rice vinegar, garlic, ginger and chili flakes. Also a big hit. This week I added in some sliced shallots and some smoked almonds (made from scratch with salt and smoked paprika).
You can, of course, make this with fresh broccoli.
24 ounces broccoli florets (frozen Bodek is fine)
1/4 cup olive oil
1 Tbl. minced ginger
2 small or 1 large clove garlic, minced fine and mashed to a paste with a sprinkle of salt
1 shallot, sliced thin (optional)
1/4 tsp. chili flakes
1 tsp. soy sauce (1 take-out packet)
1 Tbl. rice vinegar (1 capful)
Smoked almonds (optional):
1/2 cups whole almonds
salt, to taste
smoked paprika, to taste
enough of above dressing to coat lightly (or a little bit of olive oil)
Put the broccoli on a foil lined baking sheet.
Combine dressing ingredients in a small bowl and set aside.
In another bowl, place almonds and drizzle over a little of the dressing, just enough to lightly coat the almonds. Sprinkle over smoked paprika and salt, to taste.
Add remaining dressing to broccoli and toss well to evenly coat broccoli with dressing.
Bake broccoli at 425 degrees for 18 minutes. Add almonds and bake another 8-10 minutes.
Note: You might need to add a tiny bit of salt to taste at the very end, so check.