This information has been reviewed and adapted for use in South Carolina by J. G. Hunter, HGIC Nutrition Specialist, and K. L. Cason, Professor, State EFNEP Coordinator, Clemson University. (New 09/05.)
South Carolina-grown broccoli is available in the spring and the fall.
Look for firm, compact clusters of small flower buds (flowerets). Flowerets should be dark green and may have a purplish cast.
Avoid thick, tough stems. If the flowerets are enlarged, opened, yellowish-green or wilted, then the broccoli is not fresh. Never buy broccoli that is soft or slippery. This is a sign of spoiling.
One Pound Fresh Broccoli Equals:
Refrigerate fresh broccoli in a plastic bag right after purchase. Use broccoli within 3 days of purchase, since the vitamin content will decrease the longer it is stored.
To Retain Vitamins:
To Blanch or Boil: Bring about an inch of water to a rapid boil. Add the washed and trimmed broccoli. Quickly bring to a second boil and cook, uncovered, 3 to 5 minutes.
To Steam: Wash and trim broccoli. Cut into pieces that fit your steaming basket. Bring an inch of water to a boil. Fill the steamer basket with broccoli, arranging larger pieces on the bottom. Set over water; cover and steam until tender, 8 to 15 minutes depending on how firm or soft you like it.
To Microwave: Place a pound of washed, trimmed broccoli in a covered dish with ¼ cup water. Cook at highest power 5 to 10 minutes, rotating halfway through cooking. Let stand for 5 minutes.
To Stir-Fry: Wash and trim broccoli. Cut off flowerets and save in a bowl. Peel stalks and cut into 1- to 2-inch strips, or angle-cut. Heat 1 tsp. of oil for each cup of broccoli. Stir-fry stalks for 1 minute in hot oil, and then add flowerets. Stir-fry another 2 to 3 minutes. Remove from heat. If you prefer softer broccoli, cover and let set for a few minutes.
Broccoli & Carrot Stir-Fry:
1 tsp. oil
¼ tsp. garlic powder (or 1 tsp. fresh)
¼ tsp. ground ginger (or 1 tsp. fresh)
2 cups broccoli cut into 1" pieces
3 medium carrots, sliced thin
½ cup sliced onion
1 Tbsp. water
1 tsp. soy sauce (preferably low sodium)
Directions: In a wok or large skillet, heat the oil briefly. If using fresh garlic and/or ginger, add these ingredients and stir-fry for 15 seconds. Add the broccoli, carrots, and onions, tossing the vegetables to mix them well. Add the water, cover and cook for 3 minutes over medium heat. Remove the cover and turn the heat to high. Cook the vegetables, stirring them 5 minutes longer or until the vegetables are tender-crisp. If using garlic powder and/or ground ginger, add now and mix in the soy sauce. Remove the pan from the heat and serve. Serves 4.
Calories: 52 per serving
Fat: 4 grams per serving
Broccoli Supper Casserole:
2 cups cooked rice
2 cups fresh broccoli, chopped
2 cups cooked, diced turkey or chicken (no skin), or drained canned tuna
1 cup undiluted cream soup (or white sauce)
⅓ cup grated cheese
Directions: Preheat oven to 350 °F. Cover the bottom of a large flat casserole with cooked broccoli. Arrange turkey, chicken, or tuna on top and cover with cheese sauce, white sauce, or cream soup. Sprinkle with grated cheese. Bake 20 to 30 minutes. Let stand about 5 minutes before serving. Serve over rice. Makes 4 servings.
Calories: 310 per serving
Fat: 11 grams per serving
University of Illinois Extension fact sheet; originally developed by Michigan State University Extension
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This information is supplied with the understanding that no discrimination is intended and no endorsement of brand names or registered trademarks by the Clemson University Cooperative Extension Service is implied, nor is any discrimination intended by the exclusion of products or manufacturers not named. All recommendations are for South Carolina conditions and may not apply to other areas. Use pesticides only according to the directions on the label. All recommendations for pesticide use are for South Carolina only and were legal at the time of publication, but the status of registration and use patterns are subject to change by action of state and federal regulatory agencies. Follow all directions, precautions and restrictions that are listed.