Monday, March 5, 2012

The Best Broccoli of Your Life, now Vegan!

Today I ate about a pound of broccoli.  In one sitting!  This roasted broccoli with lemon, garlic, salt, and pepper was just that good.  I think the nutritional yeast flakes on top (nooch) really sealed the deal here, and if you're unsure of the nooch or don't have a source available near you, feel free to substitute a high quality salty cheese.

My instant affinity for this "best ever" broccoli surprised me.  In the past, broccoli had consistently elicited a certain gag reflex from me-of all of the vegetables on the planet, I think our dear Veggie Wonder detested this particular green veggie the most.  I had had trouble eating more than a few bites in one sitting, even when the healthy green monster had been buried in fatty cheeses, etc.  Enter Adam of Amateur Gourmet and his post on the Best Broccoli of Your Life.  Given its stellar rating and ongoing popularity in the culinary blogosphere (over several years this site has been getting some heavy hit rates, Adam how did I only find you now?!!!), I decided to give the recipe a go.  But I decided to forgo the cheese topping and I prepared the dish with a vegan twist!  I also gave it a lazy twist (bottled lemon juice instead of fresh, powdered garlic instead of chopped cloves...).  If you are feeling ambitious, you can take the slightly more hardcore approach from Adam's site.  I imagine his version tastes even better, if that's possible.  This stuff is good!

You will need:
  • Chopped, raw broccoli floret chunks (I used one of the bags of pre-washed broccoli you can get at most supermarkets - again, this recipe has a lazy twist!)
  • Black pepper (freshly ground is nice, if you have it)
  • Garlic powder (or fresh cloves, if you are feeling ambitious!)
  • Salt
  • Olive oil and olive oil cooking spray
  • Lemon juice
  • Nutritional yeast flakes
  1. Preheat oven to 425.
  2. Dry the broccoli floret chunks carefully, then toss them with a combination of olive oil and nonstick spray (depending on how much fat content is a factor for you; I used about 2 tablespoons of olive oil for a 1 lb bag of broccoli).
  3. Salt and pepper the mixture to taste (you can add these spices pretty liberally).  Also sprinkle on a generous bit of garlic.
  4. Put the broccoli on a baking tray and bake or roast for 20-25 minutes, until the broccoli gets somewhat brown and crunchy on the outside (it will still be soft and tender on the inside).
  5. Remove the broccoli from the oven, and toss it with some lemon juice and a few spoonfuls of nutritional yeast flakes.
  6. Enjoy!  This stuff is good!!!

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