Food Pairings

Which wine goes with BROCCOLI? – or “It’s National Women’s Health and Fitness Day!”

She said:  I can’t believe I used to be a vegetarian and used to eat raw broccoli all the time.  Now, I hate broccoli.  In fact, I don’t know anyone who likes broccoli.  But today is National Women’s Health and Fitness day, so what better way to celebrate than figure out which wine goes with broccoli and find a good broccoli recipe?

I have finally found a broccoli recipe that doesn’t make me barf. From the lovely Barefoot Contessa with a few variations by me because the only thing I hate more than broccoli is cooking.

Barefoot Contessa Broccoli Recipe for National Women's Health & Fitness Day

I mean – is broccoli ugly, or what? But it tastes great. This is my rendition of Barefoot Contessa Broccoli. You can’t see it, but I really did do my first “lemon zest” and there are pine nuts in there and there are garlic slices and basil slices, I swear.

Barefoot Contessa’s Awesome Broccoli

Heat the oven to 325 degrees
What you’ll need:
1  head of broccoli
2 tablespoons of olive oil
salt and pepper to taste
6 cloves of garlic
3 tablespoons of pine nuts
6 leaves of basil
zest of 1 lemon rind (or orange or lime if you don’t like lemon)
a mixing bowl
a cookie sheet
Rinse the broccoli
Cut into pieces
Be sure to dry the pieces thoroughly
Put them in a bowl
Drizzle the olive oil over the flowery portion of the heads.
mix w/your hands or a spatula.
Let sit for 20 mins so the broccoli absorbs the oil  (that’s my note, not the Contessa’s)
Sprinkle salt and black pepper to taste ( I like a lot of salt & pepper)
Peel the garlic
Slice the garlic into long slices
Mix all that together, toss it around a few times
Put it on a cookie sheet (with sides to prevent the broccoli from escaping)
Separate all the broccoli pieces so they aren’t on top of each other
Bake in your 325 degree oven.
Check on it in 20 mins.
What you want is for the flowers of the broccoli to begin to brown. When they begin to brown, you’re almost done.
20 minutes later
Roast the pine nuts slightly (in a pan on a burner apparently)
Toss them in w/the broccoli
Slice the basil into thin strips – toss that in there, too.
Put it all in a serving dish (because you’re not tacky)
Zest 1 lemon, (or orange or lime if you don’t like lemon)
Sprinkle the zest from the lemon, lime or orange on top
Eat like a monster.  It’s sooooo good.
Then take a nap (that was exhausting)
Options:  you can add additional olive oil if you want. (doesn’t need it in my opinion)
Grated parmesan cheese – you can sprinkle on some parmesan cheese (doesn’t need it)
Seriously good broccoli.
He said:  Now you have two things you know how to make! You’re a star chef!
She says:   And now… what about the wine?
2005  Kenneth Crawford Grenache was great with it!  Too strong you say?  Well, broccoli is a strong vegetable, so it met it’s match with this red wine.  (I’m sure more current years of Kenneth Crawford Grenache will be great, too — 2005 was just sitting nearby. Kenneth Crawford wines are an easy “win” for everyone.)
2011 Terre di Terrosa Pino Grigio from Italy also tasted great.
For purists, you’ll probably be happier tasting it with the white wine.
Did you choose a different wine? Tell me about it!
He says:  A nice Sauvignon Blanc is also good. Ferrari-Carano Fume Blanc is widely available and always a dependable, fruity, delicious sauvignon blanc.  Fume blanc is a name coined by Robert Mondavi that usually is used to denote a sauvignon blanc that has been aged in oak for a little bit and has a rounder flavor.  If you find many sauvignon blancs too grassy or vegetal (like broccoli!), then try this fume blanc as it’s closer in flavor to a chardonnay but still with some acid to make it very food friendly.  It pairs well with the lemon in the dish.
A few other links for National Women’s Health & Fitness Day!
Healthy Lifestyle post from Holly Fulger &  Speaking of Beauty TV
Healthy Lifestlyle  post from Dr. Holly Thacker &  Speaking of Women’s Health
Best of luck with your broccoli….lol… !!!
Be sure to make time just for you and your health today!

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