Have you ever tried broccolini? It looks like a skinny version of broccoli with smaller florets and longer thinner stalks. A natural hybrid between broccoli and gai lan (Chinese broccoli), it’s much sweeter than either one. I prefer broccolini so much I can’t even remember the last time I bought broccoli or gai lan.
Grown locally at Tomatero Organic Farm in Watsonville, it’s usually available at their various farmers market booths. I don’t recall seeing broccolini at the local chain grocery stores but then again, I’m not looking for it there.
Enjoy broccolini in a variety of ways, as a stir fry, how I use it. As a pizza topping, how California Pizza Kitchen uses it. Or as Broccolini Gomaae, a vegetable side dish with sesame dressing, how a Japanese restaurant might use it.
Inspired by the sesame broccolini, I made a peanut sauce version as I like the taste of peanut butter over sesame (since I’m making it, I get to use all my favorite ingredients). As I already have a peanut sauce recipe on the blog, I just modified that to be simpler.
Or you can use your favorite peanut sauce. I think almond butter would work too but I haven’t gotten around to trying that just yet.
Broccolini with Peanut Sauce
Serves 2 as part of a meal
1 bunch broccolini, about 8 ounces
Sesame seeds for garnish
2 tablespoons smooth peanut butter
1 tablespoon soy sauce
2 tablespoons water
1/2 tablespoon rice vinegar
Wash and trim the broccolini. Bring a pot or wok of water to boil. Parboil the broccolini for about 30 seconds to 1 minute. (To preserve vitamins and minerals, use the minimal amount of water and the shortest amount of time.) Drain and place on a serving dish. Make the peanut sauce.
When ready to serve, pour the dressing as desired over the broccolini. Sprinkle with the sesame seeds. Since I didn’t use all of the dressing, I saved it for another time. And if you’re not serving all of the broccolini at once, than store separately to enjoy later.