My usual approach to serving a vegetable side dish is to keep it very simple—often just steaming the vegetable--and concentrate my cooking energy on the other parts of the meal. I recently found this recipe, which gives a big flavor boost while still being simple to prepare. This will now be a standard! The original recipe was for broccoli florets, but the next night I made it with a mixture of green beans and snow peas, and that was also great. The first night, I minced fresh garlic cloves. The second night I used minced garlic from a jar, and I didn't notice a difference. The first night, I toasted the nuts; the second night I didn't bother, and didn't notice the difference. I originally made this recipe because it called for hazelnuts, and I happened to have some on hand, but I'm confident it would also be good with other nuts (I'd try pecans, cashews, or pistachios, or walnuts).
BROCCOLI (or other green vegetable) WITH SCALLION DRESSING
AND HAZELNUTS (or other nuts)
adapted from The New American Plate Cookbook
4 cups small broccoli florets (or green beans, snow peas, or other green vegetable)
1 T. toasted sesame oil
3 scallions, trimmed and thinly sliced
3 garlic cloves, finely minced (from a jar also fine)
1 T. soy sauce
3 T. coarsely chopped toasted (or not) hazelnuts (or other nuts)
Bring a large pot of water to boil. Add the broccoli (or other vegetable) and cook for 3-4 minutes, until cooked to your liking. Drain the broccoli and rinse it with cold water to stop the cooking process.
In a medium bowl, combine the sesame oil, scallions, garlic, and soy sauce. Add the broccoli, toss well, and top with the nuts. Serve at room temperature.