Thursday, August 1, 2013

Roasted broccoli

I've always been a broccoli eater, but as an adult - and especially while I was a pregnant adult - I found and find it difficult to eat the same old, steamed broccoli once or twice each week.

It is SO good for me.  High in iron, high in fiber, a seriously positive food for nourishing our bodies. . but sometimes boring. 

I'm all for a cheesy or creamy vegetable side dish from time to time, but you sort of negate the purpose of healthy eating when you add cheese. (Do you hear me, San Antonio Squash Casserole?  Or Fried Cabbage?  Or all of you Brussels Sprouts recipes that call for extreme amounts of bacon???)

I love all of these, but trying to eat healthy is a marathon, not a sprint, and one more easily done with lighter foods in one's tummy.

So, caramelized, roasted broccoli.  This is a recipe that is all over the internet, so it cannot really be credited to any one source.

Caramelized Roasted Broccoli

One head of broccoli, washed, dried and cut or torn into small, bite-sized florets
Cooking Spray
1/2 teaspoon white sugar
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
One lemon

1.  Preheat oven to 475 degrees. 
2.  Place broccoli in a large bowl or zipper bag and spray well with cooking spray.  (I like to use my Misto oil sprayer that pumps and allows for refills and therefore use olive oil without any chemical propellant.)  Toss broccoli in oil and spray again, if necessary, until you can see that the broccoli has at least a visible coat in some places.
3.  Combine salt and sugar and sprinkle over the broccoli, tossing well.
4.  Place broccoli on a cookie sheet in a single layer and place in oven for ten minutes.  Watch carefully.  You are looking for browned spots, but the broccoli should not be burned or blackened.  Serve warm, sprinkled with lemon juice, if desired.

My husband does not like the lemon juice, nor does V1.0, so I usually don't use it. 

Also, do not omit the sugar.  The amount is negligible, and it is needed to assist in the caramelization process. 

This is one of those recipes that is so easy and has been a go-to food for our family.  I snack on any leftovers while doing dishes.  Never thought I'd be a broccoli-snacker!

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