Broccoli florets are tossed with a flavorful basil marinade then grilled until irresistibly toasty on the edges and tender on the inside.
From fritters, to salads to spaghetti, broccoli is always on rotation at my house. Whether I’m making it into couscous or just tossing the stalks in a salad I’m constantly on the hunt for new ways to incorporate it into my meals.
Lately though I’ve been keeping things simple and just grilling it.
That’s not to say grilled broccoli isn’t every bit as interesting, because it is. I’d venture to say that even if you don’t usually tend to like broccoli, grilling it might change your mind. It really is that good.
Grilling broccoli gives it a little extra oomph; bringing out its best qualities while taming it’s not so great ones. Gone is any hint of sulfurous bitterness, and in its place you’ll find tender and toasty florets with a mild almost sweet grassiness. The high heat of the grill caramelizes the natural sugars in the broccoli, which brings out an amazing depth of flavor, and adds an extra crisp texture (not to mention its super easy to do). The result is a sweet, nutty, toasty flavor that’s pretty irresistible.
So here’s what you do, you give your head of broccoli a good rinse and chop it into florets, (don’t forget the stems, those get sliced as well). Then you toss the florets in a basil pistou with a hint of garlic and lime (my go-to flavor booster) before they hit the grill. The bold peppery grassiness of the basil and olive oil is the perfect complement to the grilled broccoli. Set everything in a grill basket (or on a grill pan if you’re cooking indoors) and wait for the magic to happen. You can test the broccoli after a few minutes to see if it’s done to your liking; it should be quite green but slightly scorched in spots.
The basil is what really brings the grilled broccoli up a notch; it’s the extra layer of flavor that makes me want to devour the whole dish in minutes, along with those toasty little edges.