Archive for April 7th, 2009

Have you ever wondered what the difference is among all those green “broccoli” types?   Read on friends.  More on these items may be found at wikipedia.




Broccoli:  High in vitamin C and usually boiled or steamed.  It has gained popularity as a raw vegetable on hor d’oeuvre trays. It’s flavor is soft and flowery when eating florets, and can be crunchy when eating stalks.  The thinner stalks are great for soup! 



Broccoflower:  The edible part of the vegetable are the florets. It originated in Holland and has a milder flavor than either broccoli or cauliflower.  It looks like a green cauliflower and it is actually a variety of cauliflower.  It has a milder and sweeter flavor than other members of its cabbage family kin. 

Broccoli Rabe also called Rapini

Broccoli Rabe also called Rapini

Broccoli Rabe:  This plant has spiked leaves that surround a green bud (like a broccoli floret). The flavor is nutty and bitter.  Focus on the stems and leaves for eating. It is prepared more like a green leafy vegetable (boil and saute) rather than like broccoli which we typically steam or boil.  Due to its bitterness, Broccoli Rabe should always be cooked and not served raw. Cooking suggestion: Boil or simmer slowly over a long period of time with a ham bone until the vegetable is soft and the bitterness is gone. 

The feature vegetable of the night is…..



Broccolini:   This vegetable closely resembles broccoli with a long stem and small floret. It is a cross between broccoli and a Chinese broccoli (gai lan) or kale.  Its flavors are described as sweet with notes of broccoli and asparagus.  It is called “baby broccoli” or “aspiration”.  This vegetable may be sauteed, steamed, stir fried, or boiled. It is very good simply grilled with olive oil, salt and pepper, and sprinkled with lemon. Less is more when cooking this vegetable. It is tender and delicate.

Broccolini with Lemon Glaze (serves 2)


  • 1 bunch Broccolini: wash, cut of lower 1/3 of stem (the really thick part) and discard
  • 1/2 cup white wine or vegetable broth
  • 1/2 tsp lemon zest
  • 1 TBS fresh lemon juice
  • 1/2 tsp honey
  • 1/2 tsp grated ginger
  • 1/4 tsp fresh dill
  • salt and pepper to taste

Bring a pot of water to a boil, add the broccolini and cook about 10 minutes.

Combine the wine (or broth), lemon zest,  juice, honey, and ginger in saucepan and bring to a boil.  Reduce to about 1/2. Approx. 8 minutes.

Stir in dill and salt and pepper.  Pour over the broccolini and serve.

Eat your vegetables. They are good for you. Try vegetables you’ve never tried before. There are some WONDERFUL varieties available.


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It seemed like the rain was falling all night. It wasn’t predicted to be a very pleasant day today, turning cold, possible snow.  Well, it wasn’t snowing. The rain was falling very lightly at 5:30 am and the wind was blowing.  Will it ever end?  The only thing to do is turn on all the lights in the house, crank the heat up as high as it will go, and make a Pina Colada, while laying on a towel in the middle of floor wearing only your bathing suit.  No, can’t do that. We have to think GREEN and that would be abusive use of resources.  Ok.  So put on a really thick sweater, light a fire, grab a glass of wine, turn on some soft jazz, lay back and relax.  Too early for  that.   Get dressed and go to work.  Thats it!

Instead of playing make-believe, a good workout was completed.  4 miles on the treadmill. 30 minutes of leg training, finishing with 50 crunches.  Shane and I went for a walk, just under 3 miles. 

The wind is very creepy at times when it blows hard and makes the trees creek.  Bags and leaves come chasing from behind.  One can really get freaked out and then reassured and grateful to have a big German Shepherd walking along side.

Food for Thought….

A strawberry Jay Robb Protein Shake:


A hot bowl of Steel Cut Oats cooked with 2 Vanilla Hazelnut tea bags.  Raisins and chopped “Fancy” apple added to the bowl.  It was the fancy apple from Harry and David.  But it was quite unimpressive, a little soft, and not overly sweet.


The texture of steel cut oats is good if you are in the mood for plump, beads of flavor.  The added apple adds sweetness as do the raisins, but the raisins provide a sweet burst of chewy fruit. 

The oats are not creamy in the Apple Crumbles version, just straight up oats with the background music of flavors.



Best hit the road and begin the day. Ignoring the weather and being grateful for our many blessings.

Have a great day and keep the people in Italy who have suffered misfortune and loss due to the quake in your thoughts and prayers.

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