This is by far my favorite way to both cook and season broccoli, and a recipe I often serve for special occasions. I use a two-step cooking method of blanching (briefly boiling) the broccoli until it's bright green, then sautéing it. Because you shock the broccoli in cold water after you blanch it, you can sauté it in multiple batches if you don't have a large enough pan to hold enough broccoli for a large gathering. I've suggested using just broccoli crowns for ease, but feel free to use whole bunches of broccoli and peel and chop the stems too; they work beautifully with this recipe.
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 35 minutes
- 3 large broccoli crowns, cut into approximately 1-inch florets
- 3/4 c olive oil
- 1/4 c red wine vinegar
- 1 T lemon juice, preferably freshly squeezed
- 1 T sesame seeds or red pepper flakes
- 2 cloves garlic, finely minced
- salt and pepper
- olive oil for sautéing
- Set a pot of water large enough to comfortably hold all of the broccoli on the stove to boil. While water is heating, prepare the dressing. Whisk together 3/4 c olive oil with the vinegar, lemon juice, sesame seeds or red pepper flakes, and minced garlic. Taste and season with salt and pepper to taste. Set dressing aside.
- Prepare a bowl of ice large enough to comfortably hold all the broccoli (the sink is an ideal place for this).
- When the water comes to a boil, add the broccoli. Boil for about five minutes, or until the florets turn bright green. Drain the florets, then pour them into the ice bath and rinse them with water until they have cooled. (This process, called shocking, will set their color and prevent the broccoli from overcooking).
- In a large skillet, heat a small amount of olive oil over medium heat. Add broccoli (cooking in batches if necessary if skillet is crowded), season with salt and pepper, and sauté until edges are golden brown and broccoli is tender.
- Serve immediately, topped with vinaigrette dressing.