Have you ever taken a look at those long, thick broccoli stalks after cutting off the florets and wished you could do something with them? You may have regretted tossing them out, as they're so big and substatial. Well no longer: broccoli stalks are full of fiber and nutrition, and they taste absolutely delicious—raw or cooked.
Here's what you do.
Start by peeling off the outer layer with a paring knife, then cutting them into roughly 1.5" strips:
Next, toss them into a wok to include them in your favorite stir fry, or simple eat them raw. Yes, it's true: broccoli stalks are delicious raw! I tried them last night in some cider vinaigrette. They are flavorful and delicious, reminiscent in texture and sweetness to fennel (though with no overt licorice flavor).
The stalks are full of nutrition too. They are very low in saturated fat and cholesterol. They're also a good source of Protein, Thiamin, Niacin, Pantothenic Acid, Calcium, Iron and Selenium, and a very good source of Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Riboflavin, Vitamin B6, Folate, Magnesium, Phosphorus, Potassium and Manganese. (See more nutrition data on broccoli stalks here.)
We searched around for some good recipes today from the blogosphere, and this was by far our favorite. It's a simple recipe for a delicious side dish courtesy of Kalyn's Kitchen, a fantastic blog you should check out! Thanks Kalyn for this great idea:
(Makes about 4 side-dish servings; recipe created by Kalyn to feed her craving for broccoli stems.)
1 lb. broccoli stems (about 8 thick stems)
1 T oil (I used peanut oil but grapeseed oil would also be good)
1 T minced garlic
1/4 cup diagonally sliced green onion for garnish (optional)
1 T soy sauce (I used low sodium soy sauce)
2 tsp. Hoisin sauce
2 tsp. Chili Garlic Sauce
1 T Splenda, Stevia granulated sweetener, or sugar
Cut off both ends of the broccoli stems, trimming away any discolored parts. Use a sharp knife to trim extra leaves or ribs from the stems and then peel with a sharp vegetable peeler. Cut the peeled stems on the diagonal into slices about 1/2 inch thick.
In a small glass mixing cup or bowl, whisk together the soy sauce, Hoisin sauce, Chili Garlic Sauce, and sweetener of your choice. Mince the garlic and thinly slice the green onions.
Heat a wok or large heavy frying pan over high heat for one minute. Add the oil and heat for 30 seconds more, or until the oil is shimmering. Add the garlic and stir-fry about 30 seconds, or until the garlic is fragrant. (Watch carefully and don't let it get brown.)
Add the broccoli stems and cook, turning often, until the broccoli stems are starting to get slightly browned, but are still a little crisp, about 6 minutes. Lower heat to medium, add the sauce and cook stirring for one minute more. Serve hot, with green onions scattered over for garnish if desired.