We love broccoli here. So I bought a bunch thinking I would make curry. But when I got around to making something with the broccoli, I didn’t have everything I needed for any of the curry dishes I would have made. I went looking in my cookbooks for some new ideas and ended up making dishes from two different cookbooks.
The first night of broccoli we had pasta with broccoli as inspired by Mark Bittman in his behemoth book How to Cook Everything Vegetarian. I made it in the spirit of saving time and dishes, and cooked the broccoli and the pasta in the same pot of water. Here is what I did:
I set a pot of water to boil on the stove and while I waited for it to boil, I cut up the broccoli florets (Bittman suggested a pound; I didn’t bother to weigh mine) and some of the stems if they weren’t too stiff. When the water was boiling, I dumped them in. Then I chopped garlic and prepared my wok. I sauteed the garlic just prior to lifting the broccoli out with a spider to add to the wok. The broccoli needed to be basically overdone, because the point of the dish is to mash the broccoli up. Once the broccoli was in the wok, I dumped a pound of rigatoni into the boiling water. While the pasta cooked, i worked on smashing the broccoli and stirring it up with the garlic and added some salt to it. When the pasta was done, I lifted it out with the spider and added it to the wok with the broccoli, along with a little bit of the cooking water. I mixed everything up and added some more salt and maybe some pepper. I’ve honestly forgotten. Sorry!
Then I dished it up and we ate it. It was okay. I ended up adding some cheese to mine because I thought it needed some more flavor. The Mister seemed to like it just fine the way it was. I forgot to take pictures of it; also, I don’t think it was the most photogenic dish, anyway.
Last night I made a “mornay-style cheeze sauce” from Robin Robertson’s 1,000 Vegan Recipes. The cheeze sauce would get mixed with our leftover broccoli and pasta and baked in the oven.
Here is what I did:
I heated the oven to 375 and boiled water for vegetable stock (I use Better than Bouillon). While the oven was heating up and the water was coming to a boil, I chopped up a 1/2 cup of onion and mixed 1 tbs cornstarch with 2 tbs of water and set it aside. I set up my food processor. I heated some olive oil in a big saucepan and put the onion in, stirred, and covered. I mixed 1tsp Better than Bouillon with 1 cup of hot water and added it to the saucepan when the onions were soft. I also added 1/2 cup of nutritional yeast and 1/8 tsp turmeric, salt, and pepper to the saucepan. I stirred until it thickened, and then whisked in the cornstarch for a couple of minutes.
Then I turned off the heat and poured the mixture into my food processor and blended it until it was smooth. I added 2 tsp lemon juice, 1/2 tsp yellow mustard, and 1/2 cup of soy milk and blended again. At that point I was supposed to return it to the saucepan and reheat it, but I forgot. It seemed a little thin as I added it to my broccoli and pasta mixture, which I had put in a 9×9 glass baking dish. I realized my mistake but it was too late. So I just proceeded. I added a generous amount of bread crumbs to the top and covered the dish with aluminum foil. It baked for 30 minutes and then I took the foil off to let it bake and brown up for a further ten minutes.
I told the Mister I had no idea how this would turn out. The sauce smelled pretty good, but it was, well, a little weird. It was also a little sloppy coming out of the baking dish and getting onto the plate, but whatever. Anyway, the verdict from the Mister was, “This is awesome.” So there you have it! And indeed, this is how our dinner concluded: