These tips are particularly suitable for cooking broccoli, cauliflower, zucchini, and carrots.
Eating vegetables is essential to health. The way we prepare them is also crucial for preserving nutrients, vitamins, and minerals. Research has shown how cooking can induce chemical and physical modifications in foods, modifying their nutritional quality.
Vegetables like broccoli are not suitable to be cooked in water. Boiling water would make them lose vitamins and minerals. The best way of cooking broccoli is stir-fry.
Stir-fry consists of cooking at high temperature in a wok or pan, adding a few tablespoons of vegetable oil – we generally use extra virgin olive oil – and moving the ingredients quickly.
Broccoli, like other Brassicaceae, is rich in Vit C. Also, they are rich sources of sulfur-containing compounds called glucosinolates. Digestion transforms these molecules into sulforaphane, an anti-cancer and anti-inflammatory molecule. This cooking method preserves their activity.
Here is a combination of quick steaming and stir-fry to make crunchy broccoli
- Olive oil
- A pinch of salt or vegetable oyster sauce
How to prepare
- Separate the broccoli into florets
- Wash them underwater and drain
- Chop the garlic and cut the onion into slices
- In a saucepan put a few centimeters of water, pour in the florets and cook with the lid on for about 1-2 minutes from the boiling of the water
- In a pan over high heat, heat the oil and add the garlic and onion without browning them. Stir-fry requires high temperatures and moving fast ingredients
- Drain the broccoli and place under cold water to stop cooking
- Pour the broccoli into the pan and sauté quickly for one minute
You can add vegetable oyster sauce to enhance the taste or soy sauce with a table spoon of sugar and two table spoons of sesame oil.
With the same method you can prepare a pan of seasonal vegetables such as zucchini, broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots. Remember to put the harder ingredients first.
If you prepare cauliflower with this cooking method, you can add a few table spoons of balsamic vinegar after cooking.
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J. Higdon, Ph. D. An Evidence-Based Approach to Dietary Phytochemicals, Thieme, 2006.