It’s funny how everyone assumes their childhood is “normal” until they reach an aha moment of Wait, was just that just us? It wasn’t until I got older and started hanging out at other people’s houses or chatting with friends about what my favorite meals or treats were that I realized maybe my family’s menus were a little atypical.
I grew up in a household that looking back was pretty healthy: no soda except for birthdays and sleepovers, if mom bought “chips” it was usually just Goldfish, cereal was always super grainy or fibery (Captain Crunch has literally never been inside my home) fish was on the menu at least 2 – 3 nights a week; and dinner was never complete without a freshly steamed vegetable.
To this day I can recall being in middle school and finding it mind blowing my friend’s mother was preparing broccoli with melted cheese. I remember staring at my plate thinking, wait— this comes more ways than just steamed? How insane! Later, as I started developing more of a palette, I also realized that even broccoli that appeared to be “plain” was often prepared in butter, or steamed but seasoned with salt and pepper. This was all truly mind blowing. Where had I been? Where had my family been? Was everyone doing these things?
Well, tonight I found myself standing in Publix with my mind blown yet again.
Jon and I had been planning to have pumpkin soup as our main course for dinner but I knew I’d require a vegetable in order for the meal to really feel complete (old habits die hard). Naturally, I hopped on Pinterest and started looking for something fun that didn’t involve brussel sprouts or butternut squash (not hating, just wanted something different). After some serious scrolling, I landed on a picture of roasted broccoli. ROASTED. BROCCOLI.
Again— what??? This recipe turned out to be not only a game changer in the broccoli world but also incredibly addicting!
R O A S T E D B R O C C O L I
1/8 Teaspoon Red Pepper Flakes
1/8 Teaspoon Garlic Powder
¼ Cup Almond Slivers
1 Tablespoon Olive Oil
1/8 Teaspoon Salt
1 Lemon (the juice of)
Parmesan Cheese (to taste)
1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees
2. Chop the florets in halves or thirds, just so the bites would be manageable. I placed the almonds and broccoli florets in a plastic Ziploc bag and tossed them in 1 tablespoon of olive oil.
3. Place florets onto a baking tray and season with garlic powder, salt, and red pepper flakes. Squeeze lemon over the tray. Bake broccoli in the oven for 20 – 25 minutes until the florets start to deflate and the buds start to turn brown)
4. After the tray has been removed from the oven, sprinkle with parmesan cheese (thinly shaved fresh parm would probably be awesome but I just used the container we have for spaghetti)
This was perfect right out of the oven but if it does start to cool down, try and fight the urge to warm it up in the microwave. We found that while the microwave didn’t add a ton of moisture, eating it room temp (and still a little crispy) was actually a better way to go!