Parmesan-Roasted Broccoli

Roasted broccoli is one of my favorite side dishes, and I typically drizzle with olive oil and a little salt and pepper. But sometimes you need a little more excitement in vegetables so when I saw this recipe posted by Christina at Sweet Pea’s Kitchen I knew it would be a winner. I down-sized from the original recipe to serve two people because I wasn’t sure how well it would re-heat. Although I have a feeling a toaster oven would make leftovers just like new.

Quick story. One of the first times I cooked for Brent I made a side of asparagus in a lemon vinaigrette. When I took my first bite I almost gagged. I added WAY too much lemon juice (it actually drained some of the green color out of the asparagus!) and immediately told him not to eat any of it because I knew it was bad and wouldn’t be hurt if he agreed. Unfortunately, he didn’t quite believe me and proceeded to eat most of it while saying it was fine. After I continued to explain that I’d rather him be honest than eat something he hates (because I’ll keep making it if I think you like it!), he finally admitted it was saturated in lemon. Neither of us could go anywhere near lemon for quite awhile – we had had enough to tide us over.

Here we are, years later and I still cringe a little when adding lemon to such things as vegetables, and we continue to joke about the lemon asparagus incident. But the lemon in this dish was not overpowering at all, in fact it was the prefect amount.

Served along with Chicken Parmesan Quesadillas.

Ingredients:

1 Tbsp pine nuts

2 cups broccoli florets

1 garlic clove, minced

2 Tbsp olive oil, divided

1/4 tsp salt

1/8 tsp black pepper

1/2 tsp grated lemon zest

1/2 Tbsp freshly squeezed lemon juice

1 Tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese

4 leaves julienned fresh basil leaves (I had to leave this out as my grocery store was, yet again, out of basil*)

Directions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees.
  2. Spread the pine nuts onto a baking sheet and place in preheated oven 5-7 minutes until fragrant. Shake the baking sheet halfway through baking so the nuts will toast evenly. Remove nuts from oven and set aside to cool completely. Increase oven temperature to 425 degrees.
  3. Place the broccoli florets in a single layer on a large rimmed baking sheet. Sprinkle the garlic on the broccoli and drizzle with 1 Tbsp olive oil. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper. Roast until crisp-tender and the tips of some of the florets are browned, about 20 to 25 minutes. Remove the broccoli from the oven and immediately toss with 1 Tbsp olive oil, the lemon zest, lemon juice, pine nuts, Parmesan, and basil. Serve hot.

Source: Adapted slightly from Sweet Pea’s Kitchen

*I need my own herb garden.

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