Oven Roasted Lemon Garlic Broccoli

I know, broccoli is controversial (though not quite as much as brussels sprouts). Some love it, some hate it.  If you’re not a broccoli fan, this recipe for oven roasted lemon garlic broccoli might change your mind. Roasting helps reduce the bitterness and gives the broccoli a nutty flavor (from the caramelization).  It also makes the broccoli crispy outside, tender and sweet inside.

I have used frozen broccoli florets, because they cook more quickly (and I had a big bag of them). This is also more practical, since it’s tough for one person to eat an entire head of broccoli all at once!  This way I can take out just what I need and the rest can stay frozen until I want it for something else.

Plus, frozen vegetables often have more vitamins and better nutrition than fresh vegetables do.  That’s because the frozen version has been picked and then preserved (by freezing) immediately, while fresh produce may have traveled for days from some other state (or even country) before it gets to your supermarket.

If you have fresh broccoli (or a farmer’s market nearby), you can use that too.  Don’t toss out the stems, they are just as good as the florets.  They do cook faster (and better) if you remove the tough outer layer from the stems first. A vegetable peeler will work just fine for this.

You’ll also need to cook fresh broccoli a bit longer (since the frozen broccoli has been blanched first).  Roast the fresh broccoli for about 25 minutes. If you like it super-crispy, roast it for half an hour (turning it once).




Oven Roasted Lemon Garlic Broccoli Substitutions and Variations

  • Toast some breadcrumbs or panko and sprinkle them over the broccoli
  • Sprinkle some pine nuts or chopped walnuts over the broccoli
  • Make it a full meal by topping it with a fried egg or mixing the cooked broccoli with some pasta
  • Use the same roasting technique and change the seasoning to make it Asian with garlic, ginger, soy sauce and sesame oil

More Broccoli Dishes

pasta with broccoli, mushrooms, and chicken sausagePasta with Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Chicken Sausage

Easy, delicious, and adaptable. If you don’t have sausage, use bacon. No broccoli? Try asparagus instead.  It’s got all your veggies, your protein, and your starch in a single bowl.

Lmab keema with potatoes and broccoliLamb Keema with Potatoes and Broccoli

A sort of South Asian shepherd’s pie. Made with ground lamb, this isn’t overly spicy, and only needs one pot. Ready in about half an hour.

More Vegetable Side Dishes

honey mustard glazed carrotsHoney Mustard Glazed Carrots for One

Savory mustard, tender sweet carrots, and a little bit of honey. These carrots go great with roast chicken, pork, or a steak.

 

sauteed garlic parmesan spinachSautéed Garlic Parmesan Spinach

An Italian side dish that’s fairly pantry-friendly too. The original version was too much bother, so I simplified it. It’s now also time and effort friendly.  Great with some grilled fish.

 




Frittata Recipe for One Person

The first time I made this frittata recipe it was for a crowd (rather than one serving) on a boat, which was rocking. It took quite some time to make and they devoured it in minutes! I’ve scaled it back considerably, made it a bit faster, and of course, it’s now a frittata recipe for one person instead of six. If you’re not sure what a frittata is, think  of an omelette crossed with a quiche. The full list of ingredients changes, but it’s essentially eggs, sliced potatoes, and veggies.

The other great thing about frittatas is that they’re flexible. The original recipe (from one of the 60 Minute Gourmet cookbooks) called for ham, zucchini, leeks, peppers, and mushrooms. A great combination, but I didn’t have all those ingredients when I made the version I’ve posted here. So, I used broccoli, mushrooms, and onions instead.

It does require a bit of slicing and chopping, but you can cheat, and use some frozen, pre-cut veggies, which is what I did here. I’m calling it lunch, but you could make it for a weekend brunch or for dinner too.




 

Substitutions and Variations for Your Frittata for One

  • make it with spinach, feta, scallions, and dill (like spanakopitas)
  • or crumble some cooked sausage and parmesan cheese
  • add artichokes (the marinated kind) and red peppers
  • add a mild cheese
  • cook some bacon, crumble it up, and add that to the vegetable/potato mixture

More Egg and Omelette Recipes

spinach and feta cheese omeletteFeta and Spinach Omelette

The essential flavors of spanakopitas, without all the fiddly phyllo dough.  Salty feta, tender spinach, and a mild oniony bite from scallions.

 

egg chili cheese burritoEgg Chili Cheese Burrito Recipe

Great for any meal, and perfect when you want food fast.  Cook an egg, heat some canned beans, and heat some chilis. Ready in fifteen minutes.

 

eggs with spinach and chili pepperEggs with Spinach and Chili Peppers

Another perfect breakfast, light lunch, or brunch favorite.  Earthy spinach, some cumin for spicy warmth, and chili for heat.  Ready quickly too.

 

egg and tomato gratinEgg and Tomato Gratin for One Person

Eggs mixed with sweet tomatoes, fragrant onions, and garlic, and topped with cheese. That’s tomatoes in the photo (not bacon), but you could certainly add some!

 




Pasta with Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Chicken Sausage

This pasta with broccoli, mushrooms, and chicken sausage recipe is based on a recipe invented by Kimberly Chapman (from Eat the Evidence; she makes astonishing desserts and “Ace of Cakes” cakes too).

She had this wonderful English, locally raised bacon and fresh asparagus and decided to make pasta with it (her recipe is here).

It looked so good I wanted to try it.  But I didn’t have bacon (or asparagus).   I could have gone out and bought asparagus, but I’m not a huge asparagus fan, unless it’s drenched in Hollandaise sauce.  I did have some chicken sausage and frozen broccoli though.  So, I decided to follow her technique while changing the ingredients a bit.

I used chicken sausage instead of bacon, kept the mushrooms, added red bell pepper (as I had part of a pepper leftover from something else and had to use it up).  Then, I changed the cheese to Manchego instead of parmesan, because that’s also what I had on hand.

Tip:
When your chunk of parmesan, Manchego, or other hard cheese gets hard to grate with a box grater, use a microplane instead.  You can also save the rinds (or even buy them at the market) and use them for soup. Just put them in a plastic bag in the fridge. They’ll keep indefinitely.

Back to the recipe, you essentially, cook the sausage (or bacon), add the veggies, then the pasta, some chicken broth, and top it all with grated cheese.




More Pasta and Broccoli Recipes

oven roasted lemon garlic broccoli

Oven Roasted Lemon Garlic Broccoli

Broccoli gets a bad rap for being bitter, but roasting gives it a sweet, nutty flavor, enhanced by the citrusy lemon and the mellowed garlic.

 

Lmab keema with potatoes and broccoliLamb Keema with Potatoes and Broccoli

Think of this as Pakistani shepherd’s pie. It’s good with beef or lamb, and comes together all in one pan.

 

quick and easy summer pastaQuick and Easy Summer Pasta

Ideal for hot, humid days when you don’t want to cook much, this pasta is great either hot or cold.  No mayo, so you can take it with you.

 

spaghetti spinach lemon cream sauceSpaghetti with Spinach and Lemon Cream Sauce

Leafy greens and citrus pair beautifully together in this light summer pasta.  Make it as is with spinach, or swap that for broccoli.

 




Pistachio Pesto Pasta

This pistachio pesto pasta recipe is a bit different from standard pesto recipes. Most standard pesto recipes use basil and pine nuts.  A great combination, but it’s tough to use up a whole bunch of basil when cooking for one.  Either you have to make a big batch of pesto and freeze it, or it spoils.

I do have a basil plant, but cutting enough off to make pesto would leave me without much of a plant! This is a good compromise.

Plus, pine nuts have gotten awfully expensive.  It does have some basil, but I replaced most of it with broccoli. Then I substituted pistachios for walnuts or pine nuts.

Actually, to be entirely truthful, I ‘stole’ this idea from one of Robert Parker’s Spenser novels. Shhh, don’t tell anyone. He seemed to like food as much as he enjoyed mysteries and books (my kind of author).

You get the sweet, summery taste of basil, the earthiness of  broccoli, and the crunchiness of the pistachios (use the unsalted kind).  You can use walnuts too, if you prefer.

Not to mention, the broccoli keeps better than basil. And, if you want, you can buy it frozen. That also means less prep time, and less cooking time.

It’s also quick and easy to make (which is always a plus).




 

Pistachio Pesto Pasta Substitutions and Variations

  • Use spinach in the pesto instead of broccoli
  • Skip the greens entirely and make a walnut pesto with walnuts, olive oil, parsley, parmesan, salt, and pepper
  • If you like your pesto spicier, add some chiles
  • Make it with walnuts instead of pistachios

Tools and Ingredients for Pistachio Pesto Pasta

Roasted Unsalted Pistachios

These are freshly roasted (unlike the stale bags you often get in the store), and already have their shells removed, so you don’t have to fuss with cracking them open. Just pour, measure, and eat.

More Pasta Recipes

pasta with broccoli, mushrooms, and chicken sausagePasta with Broccoli, Mushrooms, and Chicken Sausage

Salty sausage paired with crispy-tender veggies and pasta. An easy summer meal that’s also versatile. Switch the peppers for snap peas, or asparagus, or whatever other veggies you like.

spicy sesame noodlesSpicy Sesame Noodles Recipe for One Person

Takeout without takeout. Make this restaurant standard easily at home, with ingredients you likely already have.

 

pasta alla norma with eggplantPasta alla Norma with Eggplant

Rich, tender eggplant in a zippy tomato sauce that’s ready quickly.  Served with a caprese salad.

 

linguine with garlic and olive oilLinguine with Garlic and Olive Oil

Pantry-friendly and works with either upscale or budget-friendly ingredients. Just a simple, flavorful meal of linguine, some garlic, olive oil, and a touch of broth.

 

 




Quick Dinner Recipes for One Person

You get home from work, you’re tired, you’re hungry, and you’re thinking, “How can I make a quick dinner that won’t take forever to cook?” You open the refrigerator, and stare inside, hoping for inspiration. You’re tempted to go for fast food, or reach for the menu from the pizza place.   Skip the takeout and make one of these quick dinner recipes for one person instead.

They’re all a single serving, but you can make enough for two, save the rest, and reheat it a day or two later (then you get dinner in 2 minutes!).

Most of these recipes take about 20 or 25 minutes to cook. Cut up some fruit, heat some rice (I always make extra), make a quick salad, or grab some crusty bread, and you’ve got dinner!

Quick Dinner Recipes for One

Single Serving Creole Cabbage with Sausage

creole cabbage and sausage

Skillet Chicken Thighs with Mushroom Sauce

chicken mushroom skillet recipe




Easy Italian Wedding Soup Recipe

easy italian wedding soup

Apple Glazed Ham Steak

apple glazed ham steak

Easy Chicken Curry Recipe for One

one person chicken curry

Eggplant Parmesaneggplant parmesan for one

Pasta Pesto with Pistachios and Broccolipistachio pasta pesto

Salmon with Greek Yogurt Dill Sauce for Onesalmon greek yogurt dill sauce

Singapore Noodles Dinner Recipe for One

easy singapore noodles with chicken

Greek Fish with Lemon and Tomatoes

greek fish with lemon and tomatoes

This has become one of my favorites during the summer. It’s tasty (and quick) when it’s hot and I don’t feel like cooking. Use greenmarket tomatoes (if you can get them).

Cold Leftover Steak Salad with Red Wine Vinaigrette

cold leftover steak salad




More Quick Dinner Recipe Ideas

15 minute meals for oneFifteen Minute Meals

In a really big hurry? Try my fifteen minute meals.  Real food (like tuna with beans, cherry tomato frittata, and eggs with spinach and chili peppers) in less time than it takes to order takeout.  Just the thing when you’re “hangry” and need food fast!

Jacques Pepin’s Fast Food My Way

Start with a French chef and you know the food will be good. His version of fast food has no Big Macs in sight. Instead, you’ll get sweet potato chowder, oven baked salmon with sun-dried tomato and salsa mayonnaise, and egg and cheese gratin.


The Bon Appetit Cookbook: Fast Easy Fresh

The name pretty much says it all. It’s got over 1,000 recipes made with ingredients that are easy to find. This book uses everyday ingredients, tells you what’s in season, and organizes the recipes by both types of foods and meals. Great if you’ve got some fish and don’t know what to do with it.

French Cooking in Ten Minutes: Adapting to the Rhythm of Modern Life (1930)

Before Rachel Ray, there was Eduard de Pomaine. This cookbook shows you how to make veal, beef, fish, desserts, and even soups in only a few minutes. And, it’s funny and well-written.

Yes, it was written long ago, but the translators have kindly included instructions on updating it for the modern kitchen (if it took 10 minutes chopping by hand, imagine what you can do with a mini-chopper!)