Sprouting Broccoli with Lemon Vinaigrette

This light and fresh side is accented by tart lemon juice and fresh-cracked pepper.

Ingredients:
1 pound sprouting broccoli
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon lemon juice
¼ teaspoon sea salt
Pinch of fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Wash and trim the broccoli and steam for 5 minutes, until it is crisp yet tender. Drain.

2. In a small bowl, whisk together the oil, zest, lemon juice, salt and pepper. Drizzle the dressing over the broccoli and toss to coat.

Variations: This crisp side is also wonderful topped with chopped hazelnuts, or a pinch of crushed red pepper in lieu of black pepper.

Mustard-Roasted Cauliflower

Try making this elegant side dish with your favorite wholegrain mustard.

Ingredients:
1 large head cauliflower
2 tablespoons olive oil, divided
1 tablespoon high-quality wholegrain mustard
2 tablespoons white balsamic vinegar or champagne vinegar
1 large shallot, minced
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Preheat oven to 425°. To prepare the vinaigrette, whisk together the shallots, mustard and white balsamic or champagne vinegar. Let the vinaigrette sit for at least 15 minutes, preferably while the cauliflower is roasting.

2. Cut cauliflower into medium-sized florets. Spread florets out evenly on a large baking sheet. Toss with 1 tablespoon of olive oil and season with salt and pepper. Roast the cauliflower for 25 to 30 minutes, stirring and rotating the pan halfway.

3. Whisk the remaining tablespoon of olive oil into the vinaigrette and toss with the cauliflower as soon as it comes out of the oven. Season with additional salt and pepper, if necessary. Serve immediately.

Grilled Garlic Scapes with Lemon & Thyme

Bright yet smoky from their time on the grill, these grilled garlic scapes are a lovely side dish.

Ingredients:
6-8 garlic scapes, trimmed of roots and tough outer ends, and rinsed
1 lemon
2 tablespoons fresh herbs, such as oregano, parsley or thyme
½ teaspoons red pepper flakes
Olive oil
Sea salt and fresh ground pepper

Method:
1. Heat grill to high. Place the scapes on a sheet pan and drizzle with olive oil to coat. Squeeze the juice of half the lemon over the top then sprinkle with the pepper flakes and season with salt and pepper. Toss again to spread out the seasonings.

2. Grill the scapes until the root ends are soft and the tops are just brown. Remove from grill and squeeze a little more lemon juice over top and garnish with the fresh herbs.

Piracicaba Broccoli with Crispy Lemon Crumbs

This recipe courtesy of Gail Simmons adds crunchy, lemon-tinged bread crumbs for a show-stopping finish.

Ingredients:
1 large bunch Piracicaba broccoli, ends trimmed
2 slices of white bread, torn
1 small shallot, very finely chopped
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 ½ teaspoons crushed red pepper
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
Sea salt
Lemon wedges (optional)

Prep Ahead: The lemon crumbs can be stored in an airtight container at room temperature for up to 2 days.

Method:
1. In a food processor, pulse the white bread until large crumbs form. In a large skillet, melt the butter. Add the bread crumbs and cook them over moderate heat, stirring constantly, until golden. Remove from the heat. Stir in the crushed red pepper and lemon zest and season with salt. Transfer the crumbs to a plate to cool. Wipe out the skillet.

2. Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the broccolini and cook until crisp-tender, about 3 minutes. Drain well, shaking off the excess water; pat dry.

3. In the large skillet, heat the olive oil until shimmering. Add the shallot and cook over moderate heat, stirring, until lightly browned, about 1 minute. Add the broccolini, season lightly with salt and cook, stirring occasionally, until the broccolini is lightly browned in spots, about 4 minutes.

4. Transfer the broccolini to a serving platter and sprinkle the lemony bread crumbs on top. Serve right away with lemon wedges.

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