Broccoli is delicious and full of nutrients – Jamestown Sun
Whenever someone tells you to eat something because “it’s good for you,” it usually makes people turn up their noses. I really don’t believe this answer is elicited because of the “good for you” comment on the underlying tone of saying you really aren’t eating right. No one likes being told they are in poor health or eating poorly.
Broccoli is one of those foods that always hurts. This aversion seems to start in childhood and sometimes continues in us into adulthood. Nine times out of 10, children don’t like to eat this vegetable. Usually people try to get kids to eat it covered in butter or salt or cheese or cream sauces but really at that level you might as well give them a danish because the calories and fat added have just quadrupled. You may get better results from your kids with this doctored vegetable, but the overall product tends to be destroyed in the process.
The best way to enjoy the great flavor of broccoli is to lightly steam it until it develops a bright green hue. A very light seasoning of olive oil, garlic and pepper will add a delicious kick of flavor and provide all the great nutrients this vegetable has to offer.
Broccoli has been around for nearly 2,000 years and is a selection from the wild cabbage family. It prefers a cool growing season in organic soils that retain moisture for best product results.
This vegetable is actually the large flower head that grows in the center of the plant. It is best harvested before the buds take on a yellowish appearance before flowering.
As with cabbage and the other close relative of cauliflower, the broccoli plant can be a food source for the cabbage caterpillar. We are all familiar with the white cabbage moth that flies around these plants in midsummer and lays its eggs.
Sometimes at harvest you may notice the green larvae in the flowering heads of the broccoli. The best way to eliminate them before preparing your vegetables is to soak them in a warm bath of salt water to encourage them to pop buds.
There are chemical sprays available on the market, such as Sevin, to prevent these larvae from developing. As with most foods, I don’t particularly like chemical sprays on food sources. Another useful technique is to tie the outer leaves of the plant around the developing head to prevent moths from laying their eggs on the produce. It will also prevent the buds from turning white on hot summer days.
Broccoli is packed with cancer-fighting agents and is also very high in vitamin C and dietary fiber. By steaming, sautéing, or microwaving broccoli, you’ll lock in all the essential nutrients this vegetable has to offer.
Boiling this vegetable rapidly reduces nutritional value and should be avoided for periods longer than 5 minutes or more. Boiling will also make this product tasteless and mushy, which may be another reason why we struggle to appreciate its flavor in children.
Common varieties to grow in our region go by the names of Blue Wind, Windsor, Green Goliath, Gypsy, Green Magic and Arcadia. They all ripen within 55-65 days of planting and produce beautiful buds full of luscious green florets.
Although this vegetable does not seem to be very common in gardens in the region, it is easy to grow and should be used more often. With the nutritional benefits this vegetable has to offer, it is definitely a product that should be pursued further.
I truly believe that if this vegetable is prepared in its most natural state, it can be enjoyed by children and adults alike. It is even more and more common to serve it raw in vegetable trays as an aperitif at social gatherings.
If you can’t get your kids to enjoy this steamed or raw product, cut it into small pieces or steam it and add it to salads, casseroles, rice or side dishes. light pasta. You’ll retain the nutritional value while allowing its consumption by those who “say” they don’t like broccoli. You might be surprised who actually enjoys this vegetable when prepared correctly.
Studies have proven that fresh and steamed vegetables are the fastest way to improve our health on all levels and you can never eat enough of them. If you haven’t planted this vegetable in your garden this year, be sure to head to your local farmer’s market or grocery store to pick up some of the best broccoli heads grown today.
The comment that it’s good for you is true in many ways and it can make all the difference in your health in the future.