Friday, April 1, 2011

New Favorite Sides Part II: "Just the Best" Broccoli

So back to that perfect day (see part I).  And that perfectly grilled steak.  Even with a fabulous main course, what makes a dinner spectacular are the sides.  Check out the creative and edgy Hasselback potatoes.  Now for the green.

I have never had a problem with broccoli.  Maybe it's because mom would put a cheese sauce with it when we were kids... no problem there.  And then there's the super healthy "steaming" method to get all the nutrients: the veggie in it's purest form.  Honestly, I could eat a whole head of steamed broccoli and would be content, but other members of the family mights run and hide... and this time I have Stacy Snacks thank for some creativity.

Stacy uses this recipe for broccoli rabe.  I went ahead and used regular florets of fresh broccoli and it worked great.  And since it's my new favorite way- we're calling it "Just the Best," because it is.  Talk about turning up the flavor!

"Just the Best" Broccoli

1 head of broccoli
4 cloves garlic
1 tbls sea salt
1/2 tsp red pepper flakes
2 tbls olive oil
a dash of red wine vinegar

Chop your florets.

And your garlic.  If I got a dollar for every clove of garlic I post on this blog, I'd be a rich woman!

Went to check on Chris.  Gazing into the blue sky we had that day.  Simple pleasures... good food, good wine, creation... 'nuf said.

Back to the kitchen, pan is ready with medium heat.  Toss in the olive oil and broccoli.

Cook for 4 minutes with lid on.

Do a fancy toss or two.  Add your salt, pepper flakes and garlic.  Cook another 4 minutes.

When they look done splash in your red wine vinegar.  Cook 1 minute.

Just delightful.

OK, OK...  we can have steak too.

Here are the beauts.  Two tips on steak for today: 1)  Have the meat at room temp before you grill it, so not to shock the steak.  2)  Never, and I mean NEVER, cut into the steak before letting it "rest" at least 5-7 min after you've taken them off the grill.  You must let the juices return to the center for your palate pleasure.

And here was the wine of the evening.  A token of love from dear friends in Monterey (love to Trudi and Rich).  This Pessagno Zin was incredible.  My quote of the night: "You know, a great evening calls for a good Cab, but a Zin begs to stay later."  There is a borderline dessert character in some Zins that is stunning and just so memorable.

This 07 Zin noted with berry pie, rich cranberry and chocolate.  And the French Oak was not to be missed- a double plus in my book.

Hungry yet?


  1. I like your steak rules, and you mean it!
    Nice looking potatoes lady!

  2. I kissed Steve Pessango's hand when I met him for the first time...His wine is unbelievable! You put this all together so nice. I'm making the broccoli this week!

  3. Only the best for our much missed Oelley & Chris! Cheers!

    Love you,


  4. The broccoli was fantastic!!! Just the right bite of red pepper bits!!! Loved it the next day too!

  5. How nice to see you two enjoying a romantic meal. Gotta love Stacy's recipes. She was one of my first food blogger friends, and her recipes are no-fails. We adore broccoli, steamed or roasted. Sauteeing this sounds delicious. You make me want to run out and buy that wine. Love your saying. Happy New Year, my friend. May you, and your family be blessed even more than you already appear to be. xoxoxo