Pat and Barbara are visiting and I decided that I needed a green veg to go with the chicken and pears that I am making for dinner. Pat wanted Brussels sprouts and Barbara wanted broccoli. Since I have been making a lot of Brussels sprouts lately I sided with Barbara.
Last week I made a roasted sprouts and tomato dish that was really good. I could easily adapt this recipe to broccoli.
After Dinner Note: Actually this was not as easy as I thought it would be. I tried to treat the broccoli crown like I have been cooking cauliflower. I parboiled the whole head and then separated it into florets . The stems, while cooked, were a bit crunchier than I prefer. My diners did not seem to think so since they almost finished the dish. I have altered the directions to separate the florets before blanching.
Karl’s Roasted Brussels Sprouts and Tomatoes
¾ lb. broccoli crown
1 beefsteak tomato, seeded and coarsely chopped
2 Tbs. sweet onion, diced finely
2 Tbs. olive oil
1 Tbs. balsamic vinegar
3 cloves garlic, minced
½ tsp. dried thyme
½ tsp. dried basil
¼ tsp. black pepper
Pinch Kosher salt
1. Break the broccoli up into florets. Cut the larger florets in half or thirds.
Tip: I prefer to use broccoli crowns, because you do not end up with the problem of stem only pieces that few people want to eat. If you cut the broccoli into florets, each piece has some stem and some of the green head.
2. Bring a medium pot of water to a boil and blanch the broccoli for 2 two minutes.
Tip: I will frequently lightly boil tough vegetables that I am going to roast, especially if I am going to broil them with something else that will cook much faster. Half cooked vegetables and burned tomatoes do not make for a good presentation.
3. Put all of the vegetables and the marinade in a medium bowl and toss to coat. Let them marinate for 10 minutes.
Tip: Do not add the salt to the marinade. When you add the salt can be crucial to a dish. Salt in the marinade would cause the moisture in the vegetables, especially the tomatoes, to come out during roasting. Instead of a dry, crisping roast the vegetables would steam and turn soft and mushy.
4. Spread the vegetables in a single layer on a small lipped baking tray. Pour any remaining marinade over the vegetables.
5. Put the tray on the top rack and broil for 15 minutes. Until the tops of the vegetables are well browned, but not burnt.
Tip: Check the broccoli after 8 minutes. If necessary turn the pieces over so that they tops do not burn.
6. Remove the tray from the oven and sprinkle the vegetables evenly with salt.
7. Transfer to them to a serving bowl and serve immediately.