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Chopping Broccoli

It popped up on Twitter yesterday that apparently POTUS’s favorite vegetable is broccoli (you’re following us on Twitter, right?). POTUS of course is the President of the United States, otherwise known as Barack Obama, and that tidbit of news came via Obamafoodorama, otherwise known as Eddie Gehman Kohan.

Guess it’s not really shocking that Obama prefers broccoli, considering the tastes of that other guy who used to occupy the White House. So in honor of broccoli and Obama we are submitting our favorite recipe, one that treats that bright green crucifer with honor and dignity.

Raw-blanched Broccoli Salad


1 1/2 teaspoons red wine vinegar

1 teaspoon kosher salt

2 heads broccoli (or one head broccoli, one head cauliflower)

3/4 cup olive oil

1 clove garlic, minced

1 shallot, minced

2 teaspoons sesame oil

Large pinch crushed red pepper flakes.

This dish is inspired by Melissa Clark’s New York Times recipe from February, 2008. She includes cumin in her version (and broccoli only, I like to combine this with cauliflower), but my kids hate cumin so I usually leave it out.

In a large bowl, stir together the salt and vinegar until the salt dissolves. Add the broccoli (and/or cauliflower) and toss for a good 20-30 seconds so the vinegar is evenly distributed.

In a large skillet, heat the olive oil until hot, then add the minced garlic and shallots. Turn heat to low and let cook for one minute. Turn off the heat and stir in the sesame oil and chili flakes.

Immediately pour the hot oil mixture over the broccoli and mix thoroughly (the hot oil partly blanches the broccoli, turning it bright green, and it stays incredibly crispy). Let sit for at least an hour, stirring periodically. Season with salt and pepper before serving.

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