Broccoli with Garlic Chips (gluten free, vegan, ACD)

This recipe is one of those quick and easy recipes that doesn't really even require a recipe.  It is one of my standby I-don't-feel-like-cooking things to make.  It takes about 5 minutes, and there aren't really any measurements.  

The basic idea?  Steamed broccoli with caramelly, crispy slices of garlic and a drizzle of olive oil.  About as simple as it gets - but always a winner.  Make as much as you want to feed yourself or to feed a crowd. Love garlic?  Add a bunch.  Only like garlic?  Keep it minimal.  I like it really garlicky, so I usually use 2-3 big cloves for about 1 1/2 cups of broccoli.  The trick is to make sure your garlic is just slightly crisp, but not burnt.  keep your heat low, and remove the pan from the flame when the edges just start to turn golden.

You can use this basic idea to serve any kind of steamed veg, like steamed green beans, carrots, cauliflower, or pattypan squashes.  This recipe is a great way to dress up those broccoli stems - just peel them, and cut into slices or spears, and steam.  Feel free to add herbs or other seasonings or spices.  It is ultimately flexible, and ultimately tasty.  And since it is ready in a matter of minutes, it fits into just about anybody's schedule.

On a different note, I am excited to report I made two very exciting purchases: a julienne peeler and a mandoline.  I found them on sale, and had to get them.  

The julienne peeler is by OXO, and cost all of $3.99 on sale.  It looks just like a Y-shaped vegetable peeler, but instead of a smooth peeling surface, it has a zig zag, toothy blade. You use it just like a vegetable peeler, and it makes these lovely little *perfect* julienne strips.  Whoa.  I'm picturing zucchini noodles.  I'm picturing lovely slaws and salads.  I'm picturing perfect strips of carrot and cucumber in nori rolls.  I'm picturing unusual things like shoestring parsnip fries.  

 

As for the mandoline, this one is by Kuhn Rikon, and it has a double edged blade and a nice little hand guard.  I found it for $9.99, which made me happy, since it is regularly $20.  It only has one thickness setting, but the slices are nice and thin and will allow me to make perfect shaved beet salads and homemade yuca fries...  Plus, it is bright green, my favorite color. As long as I can use this thing without mandolining my fingers, we'll be all set.  

 

Kitchen gadgets ROCK MY WORLD. And so does garlicky broccoli.  So, without further delay...

 

BROCCOLI WITH GARLIC CHIPS

yield is flexible...

chopped broccoli (florets and/or peeled stems)

thinly sliced garlic cloves

olive oil

salt & pepper

optional: vitamin C crystals (or lemon, if you tolerate citrus)

 Slice garlic cloves into very thin chip-like slices. Coat a small saute pan with olive oil, and heat over medium-low heat.  Add garlic slices, and cook until just golden.  Be careful - you don't want to burn them or they will turn bitter!  Remove from heat. 

While garlic cooks, steam desired amount of chopped broccoli until just tender.  You can use a steaming basket, or if you don't have one, put a small amount of water in a saucepan, bring to a boil, and add broccoli.  If your water is boiling, your broccoli shoudl be tender in just a few minutes.

Add steamed broccoli to saute pan and stir to mix with garlic chips and coat with oil.  Sprinkle with salt and pepper, and if desired, a light dusting of vitamin C crystals (or lemon) for a tart and tangy bite.  

Done!  Serve hot, at room temperature, or even cold.  Good every which way.