Local First Blog


Jul 20, 2016 9:58:00 AM / by Local First


Broccoli is a popular early summer and fall crop. When eaten fresh, it is loaded with vitamin A, C, calcium, potassium, and iron.

How to Prepare:

Soak head upside down in cold, salted water to remove any hidden field pests. Remove lowest part of the stem if woody or tough.

How to Store:

Broccoli is best used within a few days. Store in a plastic bag in the hydrator drawer of the refrigerator. For long-term storage, broccoli freezes well. Cut into florets and slice stems. Blanch for 3-4 minutes, rinse in cold water to stop the cooking process, drain, let dry, and place in an airtight container such as a zip-lock freezer bag.  

How to Cook:

Broccoli can be enjoyed raw, steamed, sauteed, or stir fried.

Information adapted from From Asparagus to Zucchini



Broccoli Salad


  • 8 ounces bacon
  • Salt
  • 5 cups small broccoli florets
  • 1 cup mayonnaise
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • ⅓ cup chopped onion
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¾ cup raisins
  • ½ cup sunflower kernels
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Cut the bacon into small pieces and cook over medium heat just until crisp; drain on paper towels. Bring a large saucepan of salted water to a boil. Add the broccoli and blanch until bright green and slightly softened, about 3 minutes. Drain well, run under cold water to stop the cooking, and drain again.

In a mixing bowl, combine the mayonnaise, vinegar, onion, sugar and raisins. Add the broccoli and toss the coat with the dressing. Refrigerate for 1 hour. Just before servings, fold in the sunflower kernels and the bacon pieces. Serve immediately.

Recipe courtesy of The Food Network


Broccoli Soup with Cheddar Toasts


  • 1-½ tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 medium onion, coarsely chopped
  • 2 garlic cloves, coarsely chopped
  • 2 bunches broccoli (about 3-¼ pounds), stems and florets chopped separately into ½-inch pieces
  • 7 cups homemade or low-sodium canned chicken stock
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 1 cup skim milk
  • ⅛ teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 2 ounces extra-sharp cheddar cheese, grated or crumbled (about ½ cup)
  • 8 thin slices crusty baguette
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Heat oil in a large pot over medium heat until hot but not smoking. Add onion, garlic, and broccoli stems; cover, and cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are soft, about 15 minutes. Add stock and salt; cover, raise heat to medium-high, and bring to a boil.

Add broccoli florets; reduce heat, and simmer, uncovered, until florets are just tender, about 10 minutes. Remove soup from heat, and let cool, about 10 minutes. Fill a blender no more than halfway to puree soup in batches until smooth. Return soup to pot; stir in milk and cayenne.

Cook over medium heat until heated through (do not boil). Heat broiler. Divide cheese among bread slices; toast under broiler until melted and golden brown, 45 to 60 seconds. Divide soup among bowls. Top each bowl with a cheese toast, and serve.

Recipe courtesy of Martha Stewart


Broccoli and Pepper Stir-Fry


  • 1 tablespoon canola oil
  • 1 tablespoon grated fresh ginger
  • 1 bell pepper, chopped
  • 1 bunch broccoli, cut into florets (6 cups)
  • 1 bunch scallions, sliced
  • ¼ cup hoisin sauce
  • 1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
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In a large skillet, heat the oil over medium-high heat. Add the ginger and cook until fragrant, 30 seconds. Add the bell pepper, broccoli, and scallions and cook, tossing often, until the broccoli is crisp-tender, 3 to 5 minutes.

Add the hoisin sauce and ¼ cup water and cook, tossing, until tender, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds.

Recipe courtesy of Real Simple


Green Pizza


  • 1 pound prepared pizza dough, preferably whole-wheat
  • 2 cups chopped broccoli florets
  • ¼ cup water
  • 5 ounces arugula, any tough stems removed, chopped (about 6 cups)
  • Pinch of salt
  • Freshly ground pepper to taste
  • ½ cup prepared pesto
  • 1 cup shredded part-skim mozzarella cheese
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Position oven rack in the lowest position; preheat to 450 degrees. Coat a large baking sheet with cooking spray. Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to about the size of the baking sheet. Transfer to the baking sheet. Bake until puffed and lightly crisped on the bottom, 8 to 10 minutes.

Meanwhile, cook broccoli and water in a large skillet over medium heat, covered, until the broccoli is crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Stir in arugula and cook, stirring, until wilted, 1 to 2 minutes more. Season with salt and pepper. Spread pesto evenly over the crust, top with the broccoli mixture and sprinkle with cheese.

Bake until crispy and golden and the cheese is melted, 8 to 10 minutes.

Recipe courtesy of Eating Well


Roasted and Charred Broccoli with Peanuts


  • 1 bunch broccoli (about 1½ lb.), ends trimmed, stems peeled
  • 3 tablespoons olive oil
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 tablespoons unseasoned rice vinegar
  • ¼ cup unsalted, roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped
  • ½ teaspoon sugar
  • 2 tablespoons nutritional yeast, plus more
  • 4 scallions, thinly sliced
  • Flaky sea salt (such as Maldon)
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Preheat oven to 450 degrees. Slice broccoli stems on a diagonal ¼ inch thick. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet, toss with oil, and season with kosher salt and pepper. Gather up loose pieces of left-behind florets and finely chop.

Roast stems until browned around edges, 15–20 minutes. Add vinegar; toss to coat. Meanwhile, heat a dry medium skillet, preferably cast iron, over medium-high. Add florets. Season with kosher salt and pepper and cook, stirring often, until bright green and lightly charred in spots, about 5 minutes.

Reduce heat to low; add peanuts and sugar. Cook, stirring, until nuts are golden brown. Stir in 2 Tbsp. nutritional yeast; season again. Serve broccoli stems and florets topped with scallions, sea salt, and more yeast.

Recipe courtesy of Bon Appetit

Local First

Written by Local First