I Love Broccolini. I’ve Always Loved Broccolini.

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Grilled Broccolini

I have an issue with broccolini. It feels like fake food to me. I’d even swear it’s a new invention – if food can be an invention. The first time I saw it I just assumed it was baby broccoli (it’s not). Then I figured, it must be some sort of dumbed down broccoli rabe (well, it’s not that either). So rather than try and understand it I simply built a huuuuge rhetorical wall around it and curmudgeonly resisted buying it. Problem solved. Enough said. I don’t need to tell you.

Besides, we’ve already got regular broccoli which is the greatest broccoli in the world. Absolutely beautiful. People are always telling me, how beautiful broccoli is. It’s fantastic. That’s what they say. They’ve never seen anything like it. As far as I’m concerned they can just round up all that broccolini stuff and ship it back to where it came from.

Because some vegetable cooked up by marketing geniuses looking to fill a niche in the market just has to be bad, huh? Ugh! Why would you eat that? You know these marketing guys are worse than the media people, some of whom have blood coming out of their eyes. That’s how horrible they are.

But the thing about niche marketing is this: no matter how ridiculous the product seems to be there’s always an audience that eats it up. Besides, I know you know the niche I’m talking about. You are a part of it and so am I. We are the people always looking for something new. And we have a specific list of requirements when it comes to the latest thing for our plates. So let’s face it, these marketing geniuses know exactly what people like us are looking for – they’ve done studies. So naturally I resisted it. I refuse to be studied. I mean the head honchos at Big Agro can’t manipulate me, right? Right?

Grilled Broccolini

Wrong. I bought broccolini recently because I’d read on Twitter that grilled broccolini was the greatest thing. Just ask anybody and they’ll tell you. It’s much better than grilled broccoli. Have you ever tried to grill regular broccoli? Ugh, don’t bother. I mean look at it. Regular broccoli tends to dry out on the grill. So I’m here to say that I drank the broccolini Kool-Aid. Which means I am on the broccolini bandwagon. The latest broccolini booster. A cruciferous crusader. Shall I go on? I could ya know… GREG

Yeah. I stole this joke from Steve Lopez. But it’s a good one.

broccolini on iceGrilled Broccolini Grilled Broccolini

Grilled Broccolini

Print This Recipe Total time Yield 4Source Slightly adapted from Around the FirePublished

I made this dish about an hour ahead of serving time. In order to bring it to the table hot, I plated the grilled broccolini on a heatproof serving dish and stuck it under the broiler until the sauce began to bubble.

Grilled Broccolini

Ingredients

  • 1 pound broccolini (trimmed)
  • kosher salt (as needed)
  • 1 ½ cup heavy cream
  • 6 ounce taleggio cheese (rinds trimmed away, cheese cut into 1⁄2-inch pieces)
  • ¼ teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
  • Freshly ground white pepper (as needed)
  • 3 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • ½ cup pine nuts (lightly toasted)

Directions

Prepare a grill to medium-high heat.

Meanwhile, to blanch the broccolini, bring a large pot of salted water to a boil and set a large bowl of ice water next to the stove. Divide the broccolini into three bunches and place one bunch into the boiling water. Cook until bright green and slightly tender, about 1 minute; transfer to the ice water. Repeat with the remaining broccolini bunches. Drain and transfer to a towel to dry.

Pour the heavy cream into a small, heavy saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Reduce the heat to low. Add the taleggio pieces and whisk slowly into the hot cream until melted. Add the nutmeg, then season with salt and white pepper to taste. Remove from the heat and keep warm.

Coat the blanched broccolini with the oil and season with salt. Transfer to the grill, using a grill basket if desired, and cook until the florets begin to char lightly, 2 minutes. Flip and cook on the other side for 1 minute.

To serve, place the broccolini on one large or four small plates. Spoon the taleggio cream over the broccolini, dividing it evenly. Garnish with the chopped pine nuts.