A Roasted Broccoli Base and Three Roads to Salad Satisfaction

Broccoli is probably the most-reliable vegetable available in the produce aisle of your local supermarket. It seems that no matter what the season, broccoli is there, looking perky and ready to offer up an abundance of nutrients. A high level of antioxidants and anti-inflammatory and pro-detoxification compounds make broccoli an excellent cancer-fighting food.

With an easy-to-absorb calcium content that rivals whole milk and high levels of fiber (both soluble and insoluble), broccoli is definitely a vegetable you want to be eating more of. And I’m not talking about steamed broccoli every other day; I’m talking about super-tasty meals that use broccoli as a base.

These three broccoli salads, made from a simple and easy-to-prepare roasted broccoli base — which is also irresistible eaten on its own — will change your mind about broccoli forever.

Broccoli Salad Base

The broccoli stems can be peeled and steamed or used in soups or stir-fries. You can also add them to your green juice for a spicy nutritional boost.

Serves 2

Ingredients:

3 medium heads (about 1 1/2 pounds) broccoli, stems removed and heads cut into florets

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

Line a rimmed baking sheet with parchment paper. Add broccoli florets, olive oil and a large pinch of salt. Toss to combine and spread out in a single layer. Roast for 20 minutes, stir and continue roasting for another 10 minutes or until broccoli is browning.

Remove from oven and set aside to cool.

Serves 4

Dressing:

2 tablespoons unrefined sesame oil

1 large clove garlic, thinly sliced

1 red jalapeno, thinly sliced

2 tablespoons brown rice vinegar

2 teaspoons tamari

1 teaspoon toasted sesame oil

1 tablespoon black sesame seeds, plus more to garnish

Salad:

1 cup julienne carrots

1 cup julienne daikon

3 tablespoons thinly sliced scallions

1 recipe broccoli base

Directions:

Make the dressing: Warm sesame oil over medium heat, add chili and garlic, and cook for 1 to 2 minutes or until garlic is golden. Transfer to a bowl and add remaining ingredients. Stir well to combine.

Make the salad: Add all salad ingredients to a large bowl, drizzle with salad dressing and toss to combine. Sprinkle with extra toasted sesame seeds and serve immediately.

Calories 218; Total Fat 16 grams; Saturated Fat 2 grams; Protein 6 grams; Total Carbohydrate 15 grams; Sugar: 4 grams; Fiber 2 grams; Cholesterol 0 milligrams; Sodium 311 milligrams

Dressing:

2 tablespoons tahini

3 tablespoons water

1/2 clove garlic, crushed

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons white balsamic vinegar

1 teaspoon tamari

Sea salt to taste

Salad:

1 cup fresh dill sprigs

1 cup flat-leaf parsley sprigs

1 cup cilantro leaves

1 cup cooked chickpeas, rinsed and well drained

1 recipe broccoli salad base

Directions:

Make the dressing: In a small bowl add tahini and water and stir until smooth. Add remaining ingredients, stir to combine and season with salt to taste.

Make the salad: Add all salad ingredients to a large bowl and toss to combine. Divide between two bowls, drizzle with dressing and serve immediately.

Calories 229; Total Fat 12 grams; Saturated Fat 2 grams; Protein 11 grams; Total Carbohydrate 24 grams; Sugar: 3 grams; Fiber 4 grams; Cholesterol 0 milligrams; Sodium 283 milligrams

Dressing:

1 tablespoon whole-grain Dijon mustard

2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon white balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

Pinch sea salt

Pinch black pepper

Salad:

1 1/2 cups cherry tomatoes, halved

1/2 ripe avocado

1 red pearl onion, thinly sliced

1 recipe broccoli salad base

Directions:

Make the dressing: Combine mustard and vinegars in a small bowl. Drizzle in olive oil, salt and pepper, and stir until smooth.

Make the salad: Combine all salad ingredients and toss to combine. Divide between two bowls, drizzle with dressing and serve immediately.

Calories 234; Total Fat 18 grams; Saturated Fat 3 grams; Protein 6 grams; Total Carbohydrate 17 grams; Sugar: 3 grams; Fiber 3 grams; Cholesterol 0 milligrams; Sodium 276 milligrams

Related Links:

Amy Chaplin is a chef and recipe developer based in New York City. She is the author of the award winning cookbook At Home in the Whole Food Kitchen. See more of Amy’s recipes at amychaplin.com.

Photo: Stephen Johnson

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