Thursday, April 14, 2011

Roasted Broccoli Salad

I was reminded a few days ago how healthy broccoli is and vowed to pay even more of it to our meals.  Various phytochemicals and other components in broccoli have strong anti-cancer qualities.  Its a real miracle food (along with its cousins, cabbage, bok choy, kale, kohlrabi, and Swiss Chard) and is delish!     

I shared this at Cybele Pascal's Alergy Friendly Friday.

2 large heads of broccoli (or several smaller heads)
1 large red onion
4 - 6 cups cooked chickpeas (or 2 cans, drained and rinsed)
2 - 4 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
2 or so tablespoons balsamic vinegar
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
red pepper flake to taste (optional)
(extra olive oil for roasting the broccoli and sauteing the onion)

Break down the broccoli into small florettes (cut larger ones in half).  Peel and trim broccoli stalks and cut into 1/2 - 1 inch pieces.  Place florettes and stalk pieces  on a sheet tray lined with parchment paper or foil.  Drizzle broccoli with a small amount of extra virgin olive oil and toss with your hands to coat the broccoli all over with the oil.  Place in a 425 degree oven on the middle rack and roast about 25 - 30 minutes.  Test with a fork, broccoli should have some caramelized spots, but still be somewhat crisp.

Meanwhile, dice the red onion and saute in a small amount of oil until caramelized (15 - 20 minutes) - stir frequently.

Let the broccoli and onion cool a bit before assembling the salad.

Place broccoli, red onion, chickpeas in a large bowl.  Season with salt, pepper, and red pepper flake (if desired).  Drizzle with olive oil and vinegar - mix and taste.  Adjust the oil, vinegar and seasoning to your liking.

- add cooked quinoa, pasta, or brown rice for a more substantial salad
- add fresh herbs (such as basil, flat-leaf parsley...)
- use any other kind of beans (cannellini beans would be good)
- any vegatable can be roasted like this and used in a salad (califlower, squash, carrots...)
- add fresh greens, such as spinach, swiss chard, dandelion greens...

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