My goodness, people, you certainly love broccoli!
If you haven’t had the chance to read this piece on broccoli, go there now. Not so much for my writing — you can skip that. Jump right to the comments and see what the community of people reading here has recommended to each other. Roasted broccoli, broccoli soup, broccoli on top of brown rice for breakfast, and steamed broccoli with red onions, blue cheese, and cream to finish.
I swear, I could make a dish based on your suggestions every day of the week and still be discovering new joys of broccoli for months on end.
You see, one Wednesday, we’ll be offering up an ingredient and opening the microphone to your voices. The next week, we are going to share a recipe with that ingredient. It should keep the conversation going. It certainly keeps us intrigued. We were going to try one of your suggestions and post it as a recipe this week.
Then Danny had to go and make our favorite winter slaw for lunch a few days ago, and throw in some broccoli. Little Bean ate an entire bowl. We talked about how much we love this recipe again. That was it. Here it is.
Originally, this recipe for winter slaw was going to be in our cookbook, along with the recipe for pan-seared sea scallops with boulangere potatoes and bacon compound butter. The rest of that will all be in there, but there just wasn’t room for the slaw. (And by the way, yum.)
(As an aside, we saw the interior design for our cookbook today and nearly split open with happiness. It’s real. It’s really going to be a book. And it’s beautiful.)
I have to tell you, it has taken me all day to write this small piece. The news from Haiti has devastated me, as it has so many of us. Those images. Those children, without parents. Those parents, finding their children on the streets. It has been almost more than I can bear.
In fact, I felt ridiculous writing about winter slaw, and how good it tastes, in the face of all this. I wasn’t going to write. My friend Tamiko, however, spurred me to work by reminding me of this quote:
“Eating is a small, good thing at a time like this.” —Raymond Carver
So, I decided to share this recipe with you, here, today. Danny made the slaw for lunch again, while Little Bean stood beside him on a chair, banging a measuring cup against the counter. I took photographs of the slaw in the best light I could find, while Little Bean practiced walking up and down steps beside me, holding her daddy’s hand. We sat down to eat, music playing, while Little Bean sat chattering as she put Napa cabbage, brussels sprouts, and broccoli in her mouth. It may have been hard-grey raining outside, but we were together.
For this, I am grateful.
1 head broccoli
10 brussels sprouts
1/2 head Napa cabbage
2 stalks celery
½ cup mayonnaise, fresh-made if possible
1 tablespoon Dijon mustard
2 tablespoons rice wine vinegar
kosher salt and cracked pepper to taste
Prepping the vegetables. Take off all the little florets of the broccoli head. Peel the outer layer of the broccoli stalks and slice them in half lengthwise, then dice them (about 1/2-inch cubes). Remove the outer layer of the brussels sprouts. Cut each Brussels sprout in half. Slice the halves as thin as you can. (You could use a mandoline here, but you don’t have to do so.) Cut the Napa cabbage in half. Remove the core and slice as fine as you can. Slice the celery down the middle, lengthwise, then dice the celery stalks the same size as the broccoli stalks. Combine all the vegetables in a large bowl.
Making the dressing. Mix the mayonnaise, mustard, and rice wine vinegar. Season it with salt and pepper to taste. If you want the dressing a touch thinner, add a bit more vinegar or a smidge of water.
Finishing the salad. Coat the vegetables with the dressing. Season the salad to your taste.
Danny says, “Have a nice day.” Also, if you want to learn how to make homemade mayonnaise, we’ll have a video up in the next couple of days.