Broccoli is like green beans; it takes on great character when cooked beyond crisp. I like it nearly melting and smothered in this sauté of raisins, rosemary and pepper with the unexpected crunch of pine nuts.
Serve hot or at room temperature.
1-1/2 to 2 pounds broccoli
Salt and fresh-ground black pepper
Good tasting extra-virgin olive oil
1 medium sweet red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
1 medium red onion, thin sliced
Leaves from a 4-inch sprig of fresh rosemary, chopped
1/8 teaspoon hot red pepper flakes, or to taste
1/4 cup raisins (golden preferred)
2 tablespoons pine nuts
1. Peel the broccoli stalks. Cut the florets into 1-inch pieces, and slice the stalks into 1/2-inch-thick rounds.
2. Place a steamer basket in a 6-quart pot. Add water to the pot up to the base of the steamer. Cover the pot, and bring the water to a boil over high heat. Add the broccoli, cover and steam for 4 minutes, or until a stalk barely resists being pierced with a knife. Immediately turn the broccoli into a colander and drain it. Transfer the broccoli to a serving platter and season with salt and pepper.
3. Place the empty pot back on the burner, lightly film it with olive oil, and set it over medium-high heat. Once hot, stir in the bell pepper, onion, rosemary, and pepper flakes with some salt and pepper. Sauté 3 minutes, or until the onions pick up color. Stir in the raisins. Cook another moment to soften them. Pour everything over the broccoli. Scatter the pine nuts over the vegetables, and moisten them with a little olive oil if needed. Serve hot or at room temperature.
From The Splendid Table's How to Eat Supper by Lynne Rossetto Kasper and Sally Swift, Clarkson Potter, 2008.
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