The produce section and frozen aisles of your local grocery store may very well be
filled to the brim with fresh and pre packaged vegetables, but there’s no denying that veggies grown in your own
backyard have both the flavor and health conscious factor that these mass produced and bagged options just don’t
offer. This is especially true in the case of broccoli, one of the easiest and most versatile vegetables to grow
in the backyard
garden of your dreams and then prepare in your very own kitchen. With these broccoli tips and tricks up
your sleeve, getting your daily fix of veggies has never been easier.
Broccoli in the Garden
Next to the potato, broccoli is the most versatile vegetable inside the kitchen.
Unlike the potato, broccoli is the most versatile vegetable inside the garden. Broccoli is a crop that grows
between 18 to 36 inches tall with thick leaves and broad main stalks. Broccoli forms single or multiple “heads ”
of tiny blueish-green buds that flower. The heads then open to tiny yellow flowers.
- Broccoli grows best in compost-rich, soil with a soil that is well drained of
excess water. In regions with heavy rain or sandy soil, aged-compost should be added to supplement
- Broccoli grows best where air temperatures range between 50° and 80° Fahrenheit,
thriving in temperatures as low as 20°.
- In colder weather regions, start seedlings indoors in late summer and set them in
the garden in autumn for a winter harvest.
- Transplant plants when they’re about 4 to 6 weeks of age, with four or five
leaves. Transplants with gnarled stems can be planted up to their first leaves, preventing them from being
too top heavy.
- Plant seedlings at a small distance, no more than 20 to 25 inches apart in rows
25 to 40 inches apart.
- When ready for harvest, use a sharpened knife to remove the central flower
Growing your own broccoli really is that simple. And once you’ve gardened your heart
out, treat yourself to a evening of relaxation in your backyard living room- sectional cover included.
How To Broccoli in the Kitchen
Broccoli is high in Vitamin C and folate, providing a necessary source of dietary
fiber and potassium. It’s a simple yet delectable vegetable to prepare, making it a versatile staple in any
kitchen. Making sure to harvest broccoli that is green in color, with firm florets and stem is important for
preparing the best broccoli. This makes the large crown easier to be swiftly broken down into smaller, more
palatable sized morsels that resemble tiny trees.
- Microwaving cooks broccoli from the inside out. Heat is directed to molecules
within the plant, heating it at a rapid rate. The added moisture steams the vegetable when enclosed in glass
or ceramic containers. This process takes about 3 minutes total and leaves florets tender to taste and
- Steaming broccoli quickly cooks florets. Steaming baskets help to keep the
broccoli elevated so the nutrients aren’t lost and keep an even cook on the broccoli. Somewhere between 3 to
5 minutes is ideal for perfect florets.
- Blanching broccoli in boiling, salted water changes the color and texture. The
blanch and shock method works best for taking out the raw chew, giving the broccoli a bright green color.
This method requires the use of a nearby bowl of ice water, ensuring that the broccoli’s cooking process is
halted the moment it’s shocked in the cold water.
- Sauteing broccoli is a popular method for tenderizing the robust texture of
broccoli. Add in a few minced cloves of garlic or shallots for even more flavor. Pro tip: try using
vegetable stock or broth instead of water to bring out the rich flavor in broccoli.
- Roasting broccoli is a lot easier than you think. Start by prepping a non stick
pan with your favorite everyday olive oil, applying a generous amount. Line the tray with broccoli and bake
until fork tender. Who knows, you might want to try pulling the grill cover off and roasting the florets on
your backyard grill.
Broccoli All Over the World
From Kansas to Kallamazoo, broccoli is on a never-ending world tour. Whether it’s
being raised on a family farm in Poland or growing in a small backyard garden in California, this versatile
vegetable is never in short supply. Make delicious, nutritious, homegrown broccoli a favorite in your household
and reap the benefits of embracing a vegetable fiber rich in vitamins and minerals. Enjoy succulent broccoli
anytime, anywhere – even outside in your own backyard kitchen, complete with pillow and cushion covers for
easy after dinner cleanup.