I’m really enjoying hybrid vegetables lately – like my sautéed kale sprouts from the other day. So today’s featured veggie turns out to be broccolini, or baby broccoli as it’s also called. I always thought that broccolini essentially was baby broccoli, or young broccoli. But once I thought that one through all the way (I have, after all, grown my own broccoli before and no, it does not at any point look like broccolini) I realized that it must be a hybrid veggie. And lo and behold, it is. According to Wikipedia broccolini is a cross between broccoli and a chinese vegetable called kai-lan, which has a distinct bitter and sweet flavor combination. Kai-lan is also known as Chinese kale, or Chinese broccoli.
Broccolini is a very nutritious food, given its dark green coloring. It is an excellent source of both Vitamin A and Vitamin C. It is slightly sweeter and more tender than regular broccoli in flavor and tastes delicious prepared in a variety of ways. Today I chose braising, which I don’t do very often with veggies but is a very easy preparation method.
Braised Broccolini with a
Smoked Paprika Wine Sauce
- 1 bunch broccolini, washed and trimmed
- 1 Tbs Earth Balance buttery spread or olive oil
- 1/2 cup vegetable stock
- 1/2 cup white wine
- 1/2 tsp smoked paprika
- 1/4 cup almond slivers
- sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
Place broccolini in a saucepan with lid, dotting the top with Earth Balance. Add vegetable stock and white wine to the pan and cover. Turn heat to medium high until the liquid boils, then reduce heat to low and simmer, checking every two minutes for tenderness. The broccolini is done when it can be easily pierced with a fork but remains bright green.
When the broccolini is done, remove it to a serving plate and sprinkle on almond slivers. Continue to simmer the sauce, adding smoked paprika, salt and pepper to taste until it has reduced to 1/4-1/3 of a cup. Drizzle over broccolini and almonds and serve.
This was great cold as well, and the sauce really gave it a pop of nice smoky flavor without being overpowering. As you can tell, I cooked mine a tad too long and some of the broccolini browned a bit, although it still tasted just fine.
I think I am going to braise veggies more often – it’s super easy and brings out a lot of flavor! If you decide to try the recipe please let me know how you like it.
Stay tuned for tomorrow’s veggie recipe, and don’t forget to subscribe if you want to follow the whole 50 day challenge!
In case you missed the first 9 days, here are the recipes:
- Day 1: Guacamole-Stuffed Mini Sweet Peppers
- Day 2: Garlic Herb Rutabaga Fries
- Day 3: Roasted Brussels Sprouts with Apples and Walnuts
- Day 4: Indian-Spiced Tofu Scramble with Collards
- Day 5: Agave-Roasted Root Vegetables
- Day 6: Quinoa-Stuffed Acorn Squash
- Day 7: Tuscan Stuffed Mushrooms
- Day 8: Spicy Sauteed Kale Sprouts
- Day 9: “Raw” Peanut Noodles