When you cook broccoli… what do you do with the stems???
I used to be the one who would cut the florets off and I would get rid of the stalk. But when I started cooking weekly at the Yoga center, the first time I attempted to throw away the stalk, I got a lesson on how to utilize all the resources available in the kitchen, and that includes the broccoli stalks.
But you just can’t go and cook them the same way as the florets… the florets are delicate and with just steaming they’re perfectly cooked, as I mentioned to you previously here. But the stalks are tougher and need to be treated differently.
First, cut off the end of the stalk. You’ll see there is a green edge and a more whitish center. We need to peel off the greenish outer part. It’s stringy and not palatable at all. What I do is to pierce with a knife just inside the green part and pull off the green part. Just like with an asparagus, the green part will peel away where it’s supposed to cut off if you make the cut as deep as needed. After you’ve peeled the whole stalk, just cut in into small pieces.
Now there are several things you can try out… one option is to boil the stalks together with some potatoes. After they’re cooked, you can smash them together with the potatoes and you’ll be adding lots of added nutrition to the potatoes. Because I use little water to partly boil/partly steam the potatoes/stalks, I usually use part of the water left over to mash the potatoes/stalks. The water has nutrition of the veggies you’re cooking.
If you’re stir-frying, you can add the stalks at the beginning of the stir-fry, with other harder to cook veggies, like carrots. By the time the stir fry is done, the stalks will be fully cooked.
The next time you buy broccoli, plan to use the stalks as well as the florets. You’ll be amazed at how versatile and delicious they are. It’s another way to stretch your dollar in these tough economic times.