Broccoli rave and rant

All you people in the fecund, woody corridors of the East and Midwest have no idea of the toe-tapping, teeth-grinding and hand-wringing Mile Highers suffer waiting for their gardens to produce. All that moist air and black earth, those glistening hot nights; why you've been pulling peas out of your planters since March, haven't you?

Go look at Norma's post. I'll wait. See those tubs of blueberries? Tubs. Of. Blueberries. My blueberry bush looks like it's been to Mt. Sinai and back and they're flagrantly tossing these lapis gems on cereal. You know where we get blueberries in Colorado? Costco. And they taste like gunshot.

Know what's coming up here? Broccoli. That bright green cruciferous favorite of George H.W. Bush, flowering cabbages, basketfuls of bitter, tough florets left too long on the stalk. And it's time for dinner.

Mark Bittman came to the rescue (not in the flesh, though that would have been nice had he offered to cook). His aid came in the form of How to Cook Everything Vegetarian, which I'm quite liking for its informal toss-this-or-that-in approach. Turn to the aparagus gratin recipe. A riffer, Bittman offers recommendations for other gratins, including a variation for broccoli with pesto, breadcrumbs and parmesan cheese.

I did this on stovetop so as not to heat the house by firing the oven.

Broccoli Gratin by way of Bittman

Sautee broccoli in garlic and olive oil until tender.

Add 1/2 to 3/4 cup pesto  (I did a simple pesto from walnuts, basil, olive oil and salt)

Top with 1/2 cup prepared breadcrumbs (Bittman says, "homemade," whatever)

and 1 cup grated parmesan cheese.

Cover until cheese melts and broccoli is heated through.

You'll like it. Tastes a lot better than it sounds.

Grazie mille, Mark.

 

 

 

 

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