Brocolli stems

Discussion in 'Food & Cooking' started by captain plug, Feb 1, 2010.

  1. captain plug

    captain plug

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    Can someone suggest a good way to cook brocolli stems? I have a small backyard garden here (Bahamas) and I am harvesting my 2nd ever crop of brocolli - small florets but plenty stems & leaves. Seems a pity to just throw them into the compost bin. Any ideas?

    Capt plug
     
  2. kyheirloomer

    kyheirloomer

    Messages:
    6,367
    Likes Received:
    129
    Exp:
    Food Writer
    If by stems you mean the part the florets grow out of, all you have to do is peel them, then treat them pretty much like the florets. You might want to slice or dice them so they cook evenly.

    Raw they make a great slaw as well.

    If by stems you mean the main branch of the plant, that's not particularly edible.
     
  3. french fries

    french fries

    Messages:
    5,175
    Likes Received:
    302
    Exp:
    At home cook
    I peel them, cut them on the bias and stir fry along with the florets.

    If I have guests and want a fancier stir fry without stems, my wife and I will eat the stems raw as I'm cutting the florets.
     
  4. phatch

    phatch Moderator Staff Member

    Messages:
    8,422
    Likes Received:
    437
    Exp:
    I Just Like Food
    The stems being thicker often take a minute or two longer than the florets to cook. But they're my favorite part of broccoli.
     
  5. suzanne

    suzanne

    Messages:
    3,853
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Food Editor
    I find they work better for cream of broccoli soup (pureed) than the florets -- they completely blend in, without leaving tiny dark green specks floating around. :eek:

    Agree with KYH about peeling, especially the thicker "trunks." But they work well for any dish where you'd use broccoli, especially stir-fries. I never understand why anyone would NOT use them!
     
  6. cape chef

    cape chef

    Messages:
    4,508
    Likes Received:
    32
    Exp:
    Professional Chef
    I agree, The stem is perfect to tourne, add to soups. Makes a nice addition to Bagna Couda also.
     
  7. captain plug

    captain plug

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    Thanks for the quick responses. I think I'll try the stir fry first. Now I just need to figure out why the florets didn't grow so big!

    Capt Plug.
     
  8. dc sunshine

    dc sunshine

    Messages:
    2,753
    Likes Received:
    16
    Exp:
    Other
    Love the stems. Can be used in any stir fry dishes - cook them about the same time as you would for carrots. Also, as mentioned above, great addition to a veg soup. Personally, I don't bother with peeling them. That's just what I do. Adds more fibre to your meal, so that's not a bad thing.

    Edit: Don't know why the florets are small - are they ready to harvest or should you leave them a little longer on the plant? It may be worth posting the question in the Chefs Garden Forum.

    Another Edit: you can cut the stems straight across, cook them, and serve them to kids as "Stars"...it works :) then they're eating greens and enjoying them.
     
  9. homemadecook

    homemadecook

    Messages:
    423
    Likes Received:
    12
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    I can suggest that you can just peel them, then you can add it to any of your stir fried recipes. It surely is going to be a great addition to your dish.
     
  10. masterflipper

    masterflipper

    Messages:
    5
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    I Just Like Food
    I bake them in garlic and butter. Amazing!
     
  11. teamfat

    teamfat

    Messages:
    3,975
    Likes Received:
    373
    Exp:
    I Just Like Food
    I've got some chicken stock going at the moment that has a couple of broccoli stems in it.

    mjb.
     
  12. elizabethbryce@

    [email protected]

    Messages:
    99
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Other
    Slice them and use them like carrots...you can even use them for garnishing...

    .:laser:
     
  13. voodoochyl

    voodoochyl

    Messages:
    29
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    For those that juice...stems are perfect for juicing.
     
  14. captain plug

    captain plug

    Messages:
    6
    Likes Received:
    10
    Exp:
    Cook At Home
    I made soup and it was great! Thanks for the suggestions, I will be asking for more help going forward.

    Capt Plug.
     
  15. gerdosh

    gerdosh

    Messages:
    138
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    Food Writer
    I don't bother cooking the stems--once you peel the thin but tough fiber-rich outer skin with a paring knife, the inner part is crisp and delicious to eat raw or slice up into salad. They are yummy!

    George
     
  16. dillonsmimi

    dillonsmimi

    Messages:
    261
    Likes Received:
    11
    Exp:
    I Just Like Food
    This topic is long enough without my .2, but I was admiring our new "Super" Kroger yesterday and came upon the broccoli. The stalks were at least 7 in long and very thick. The florets? All of them together were the size of about 3 carnations. Sad, sad, sad.