Sunday, February 19, 2017

Market Watch: Romanesco

Romanesco

With its florescent lime-green hue and funky spire-shaped florets, Romanesco looks a little like broccoli from another planet. In fact, its alien appearance earned it a cameo in “Star Wars: The Force Awakens.” (In one scene, Rey is shown biting into an apple studded with Romanesco florets, which drew commentary from famed astrophysicist and Star Wars fact-checker, Neil deGrasse Tyson.) In reality, this cruciferous veggie, sometimes referred to as Romanesco broccoli, is more closely related to cauliflower than broccoli. It’s also a bit crunchier with a milder, slightly nutty flavor. Though Romanesco has been on the menu in Italy since the 16th century, it didn’t make its debut in the United States until the late 90s. Until recently, it was found mostly at farmer’s markets. These days, however, you might spot it at your local supermarket during the fall and winter.

 

Romanesco Facts

Like other members of the Brassica family, including kale and cabbage, Romanesco is high in Vitamins C and K, and is a good source of dietary fiber. Romanesco is also particularly high in carotenoids and phytochemicals.

 

When buying Romanesco, choose heads that are bright in color. The stem should be firm, with no signs of wilting. Any attached leaves should be perky and crisp. Pick it up: it should feel dense and heavy for its size. Store it in a sealed plastic bag and refrigerate for up to a week.

 

 

What to Do with Romanesco

Though broccoli and cauliflower are perfectly respectable vegetables, let’s face it: they get a lot of play. Romanesco, with its exotic appearance and earthy flavor, might be just the ticket to spruce up familiar dishes. Luckily, you can do just about anything with Romanesco that you might do with cauliflower or broccoli. Try it on a crudités platter, paired with an herb dip. To preserve its brilliant color, first blanch the florets in salted, boiling water, and then shock them in an ice bath. Roasting might be the best way to concentrate the vegetable’s earthy, sweet flavor. For a simple weeknight dinner, pair olive oil roasted Romanesco florets and canned, drained chickpeas with pasta, a handful of chopped fresh herbs, and grated Parmesan. It also makes a nice side dish for fish, steak or roast chicken: simply sauté florets in olive oil with garlic and red pepper flakes and finish with a squeeze of lemon juice. The most important thing to remember: don’t overcook it! You’re aiming for al dente, not mushy.

 

Here are a few recipes to try (some call for broccoli or cauliflower, but you can easily swap in Romanesco):

Cauliflower with Avocado-Cilantro Dip

 

Roasted Cauliflower

 

Sicilian Cauliflower Pasta

 

Healthy Broccoli Roman Style

 

 

 

 

Abigail Chipley is a freelance recipe developer, writer and cooking teacher who lives in Portland, Oregon.



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Weekend Link Love – Edition 440

weekend_linklove in-lineRESEARCH OF THE WEEK

Turns out that humans display a ton of biological and psychological diversity.

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NEW PRIMAL BLUEPRINT PODCASTS

pb-podcast-banner-142Episode 156: Jeff Scot Philips: Jeff Scot Philips reveals all the trickery and misdirection used by the modern food industry.

Each week, select Mark’s Daily Apple blog posts are prepared as Primal Blueprint Podcasts. Need to catch up on reading, but don’t have the time? Prefer to listen to articles while on the go? Check out the new blog post podcasts below, and subscribe to the Primal Blueprint Podcast here so you never miss an episode.

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Bait for breakfast.

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MEDIA, SCHMEDIA

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Co-working at the climbing gym.

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Contest you don’t want to miss: Win a Passion Planner and 12 Macadamia Sea Salt collagen bars. Enter here or here.

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Article whose message hit me hard: Changing the world with more sleep.

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RECIPE CORNER

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One year ago (Feb 19 – Feb 25)

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I’ve eaten so much performance fleece that I saw “Patagonia” written on my poop!

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Clean Eating Spanish Cauli-Rice Recipe

Clean Eating Mexican Cauli-Rice Recipe

Holy moly!!! This Spanish “rice” was so amazing! I couldn’t even tell it wasn’t real rice! Seriously. It was incredible.

As some of you may know, I’m working on reducing carbs in my eating plan to… Read more →



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