I’ll admit that my freezer is full of bags of frozen broccoli. It’s easy, it’s green and that’s usually good enough for me. But if I’m in the mood for something more special, I’ll roast fresh broccoli in olive oil and garlic until lightly golden, then finish it with grated Parmigiano-Reggiano and a squeeze of fresh lemon. It’s hardly any more work than microwaving frozen broccoli, yet so much more delicious.
Begin by cutting the florets off the crown and tossing them with olive oil, kosher salt, pepper, sugar and lots of garlic.
Sugar might seem like an odd addition but it helps the broccoli caramelize and offsets any bitterness that develops as the broccoli browns.
Transfer the broccoli to a baking sheet and roast in a blazing hot oven for 10 minutes. It should be crisp-tender and lightly browned in spots.
Next, toss the broccoli with the Parmigiano-Reggiano. It’s important to use authentic Parmigiano-Reggiano rather than domestic parmesan. The fake stuff doesn’t pack the same flavor and is, quite frankly, a waste of calories. If you can’t find Parmigiano-Reggiano, try Pecorino Romano or simply leave it out. Finally, a gentle squeeze of lemon heightens all the flavors but go easy — too much can be overpowering.
Try serving with my Parmesan Crusted Chicken. Enjoy!
My Recipe Videos
Garlicky Roasted Broccoli with Parmigiano-Reggiano
- 2 pounds broccoli crowns (be sure they are dry)
- 3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
- 3 garlic cloves, minced
- 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 3/4 teaspoon sugar
- 3 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano
- Lemon wedge (optional)
- Preheat the oven to 450 degrees. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil.
- Cut the broccoli into 2-inch florets, leaving one to two inches of stems attached. Discard the remaining thick stalks. In a large bowl, combine the olive oil, garlic, salt, pepper and sugar and mix well. Add the broccoli and toss to coat evenly. Transfer the broccoli to the prepared baking sheet.
- Roast for 10 minutes, until the broccoli is crisp-tender and lightly browned in spots. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the grated Parmigiano-Reggiano over the broccoli. Taste and adjust seasoning if necessary. Transfer to a serving dish and gently squeeze 1-2 teaspoons of lemon over top. Sprinkle the remaining cheese over top and serve hot.