We are truly in the midst of the hustle and bustle of the holiday season. Christmas is here and 2016 is just around the corner. So, as it always is this time of year, we visit loved ones and eat; visit friends and eat; have friends and family visit us and eat; and usually there are some things that we shouldn’t eat thrown into the mix (but those cookies and peppermint bark sure taste good). Yet, not everything has to be heavy, fattening, or time-consuming to prepare. This is a simple, healthy, and absolutely heavenly side dish that you can prepare in a flash for your next gathering, or any time of the year. It even looks festive!
Broccolini is one of my favorite vegetables to use in side dishes. While some consider it as young broccoli, it is actually a hybrid of broccoli and Chinese broccoli. Broccolini has long thin stalks and smaller florets on the end. The stalks are thinner and tenderer than broccoli; however, you can certainly substitute broccoli here if you cannot find broccolini. If you’re going to use broccoli, simply cut it lengthwise down the stalk into small, even, twigs. You may even need to do this to larger pieces of the broccolini in order to have them cook all at the same time. No one wants wilted veggies! By tossing just a few flavorful ingredients together into a roasting pan, you have a beautiful, nutty, slightly sweet, and a pop of tang side dish for any day of the week; and, certainly, one festive enough for a holiday gathering.
1 lb. broccolini (or sliced broccoli with stems)
1-2 tbls. extra-virgin olive oil
2 shallots, thinly sliced
2 tbls. pomegranate seeds
sea salt and cracked black pepper
- Rinse and pat dry the broccolini. Remove any large leaves from the stalk.
- Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
- Peel and thinly slice the shallots.
- Toss the shallots and broccolini together in a 13 x 9 Pyrex dish.
- Sprinkle with cracked black pepper and sea salt to taste.
- Drizzle with the olive oil and toss.
- Place the pan in the oven and roast for approximately 15 minutes, flipping them once in the middle of the cooking process. You want the stalks to have a slight char to them but still retain an al dente bite.
- Remove and toss in the pomegranate seeds and serve. This is a fantastic side dish for just about any meal. Try it with grilled chicken, baby back ribs, or even your next holiday prime rib! Enjoy!