Five minutes of chopping and about 45 seconds of sprinkling: That’s all this recipe asks of you. Less, even, if you use pre-cut broccoli. But once the lemony, salty, soft-crunchy-tender roasted broccoli is on the plate—and in your mouth—you get the kind of powerful flavors and contrasting textures that usually require, y’know, effort.
I’ve been a fan of roasted cauliflower for years now, but I’m a relatively recent convert to roasting its green cruciferous cousin. Something about the way those frilly bits get all crispy put me off—I thought it would be like eating fried hair, if that’s not too weird. Well, once I got over my neuroses, I learned what so many of you probably know already: Roasted broccoli ROCKS. The crispy, frilly bits? Turns out, they’re the best part. Nothing hairlike about em. Scatter a little grated parm on top towards the end, and you get even more crunch. Drizzle lemon juice over all, and you’ve made a Wow side with hardly any additional work.
Got broccoli in the drawer? Give this a whirl alongside tonight’s chicken. You won’t be sorry, I promise.
So, what’s your most impressive no-effort side? I’m all ears. And mouth.
Roasted Broccoli with Lemon & Parmesan
1 large bunch broccoli, chopped, or one package pre-chopped fresh broccoli
1 tablespoon olive oil
Salt & pepper
1/4 cup grated Parmesan cheese
Juice of 1/2 lemon (add a little zest if you’re really into lemon)
Preheat the oven to 450°F. Line a rimmed baking sheet with foil for easy cleanup.
- Put the broccoli on the baking sheet and toss with the oil, plus salt & pepper to taste.
- Roast for 20 minutes, then take the pan out and give things a stir. Sprinkle the Parmesan over the top and return it to the oven without stirring again.
- Roast another 5 minutes, then remove from the oven and transfer the broccoli to a serving bowl. Sprinkle with lemon juice, then scrape the crunchy bits of cheese from the pan and sprinkle them on top. Toss and serve.
MAKE BABY FOOD: For older babies who are used to finger food, yes. But the texture may be too challenging for younger infants.