My recent love of broccoli for protein comes only after my love for its beautiful green and sweet, buttery flavor.
There you are, dear broccoli, hiding amidst your comrades on the produce shelf. Beside you, crisp romaine reaches tall with its vibrant stalks. Golden onions shine for your appreciation. Even drab white cauliflower embodies untouched purity in its individually-wrapped package. Yet broccoli rests with little enthusiasm. Store employees bunch you to attain some form of cohesion, but your woody stalks and tufted florets scream more "alien" than "appetite".
Broccoli, old pal, you just need a friend.
I gladly pick you up and invite you over for dinner. I happily cut your stalks long, making tiny trees from your bulky frame. Water is boiled and salted -- heavily. "To taste like the sea" echoes the voice of a past chef. In the rolling, bubbling jacuzzi, down go your drab greenness. In minutes, there is magic.
Your faded color makes way for glowing emerald. Your woody trunks soften. The salty cloud of water brings out the earthy, sweet flavors that hide in your stems.
A few minutes later, a knife easily slips out of your thickest stalk, and you are ready. A quick shock into a bath of ice water locks in your crisp green.
Tossed with a squeeze of fresh lemon and a few grinds of fresh cracked pepper, you are beautiful. You put romaine to shame. Somehow you have transformed into this delight that plays between my teeth while also melts on my tongue. Broccoli, my friend, you are ALIVE.
Take that, cauliflower.
The other veggies are green with envy.