* Prices may differ from that shownMore Offers
Contrary to some reviewers here I can only give my full endorsement to a whole broccoli head rather than the pre packaged florets, I can see no real reason why broccoli needs to be cut and packaged in this way. It's hardly an ordeal to cut off the florets before cooking.
I bought my most recent batch from Morrisons supermarket, it was fresh and crunchy at the time of purchase and in my opinion will remain fresher for longer than pre cut examples.
We didn't actually cook and eat the broccoli until the Monday after buying on a Friday but it was still delicious. We had it with a cooked ham and boiled potatoes, I usually cook it in the microwave in a little cold water, about three to four minutes gives a nice cooked but slightly crunchy texture which is how I like it. Maybe five and a half to six minutes would give that fully cooked but slightly soggy texture.
I also use broccoli in a number of dishes including curries and stews, I have even tried juicing it but I could only recommend this for the hardcore broccoli fan, I don't think I would try this again.
Well, I'm not sure how I can review specifically Asda broccoli but since we do buy broccoli quite regularly and we tend to shop in Asda, I suppose it's mainly the Asda stuff we have...so here goes...!
I generally find that the fruit and veg aisle in Asda's is really well stocked. They have a good variety of everything we would need and a lot more besides so it's nice to know that you have a good selection on offer so you can ring the changes a bit! The quality is also usually pretty good and even the reduced, out of date (or 'woops' items as Asda label them!) are generally still really fresh - great for some bargains! With this in mind, the broccoli on offer in Asda is always of really good quality and very fresh.
There are a lot of other veggies to choose but 9 times out of 10 I'll come home with some broccoli when we do our big shop! Why? Well, it's nutritious (high in fibre and very rich in vitamin C), versatile and my children (3 and 1) both love it! Yes, they can be fooled by the old 'you're eating little trees' story - hooray, mummy wins!! MUHAHAHA!!! :o)
The broccoli in Asda also comes in a variety of forms - there's the normal loose broccoli, the prepacked ready cut into florets kind (also available mixed half and half with cauliflower florets), organic broccoli (usually cellophane wrapped) and also the more expensive but very nice purple sprouting broccoli (very trendy in the world of veg!).
So what do you do with it? Steaming is best as you retain more of the vitamins than when you boil it but stir frying is also a good option. We have it with lots of different things as a veg on the side or I have a few dishes where broccoli is the star! Broccoli and cauliflower cheese, beef and broccoli stir fry, salmon and broccoli pie, etc. So it really is a versatile veg, very good for you and Asda is a good place to buy it!
I must be mad to do a review on broccoli, I mean what can you say about it?
Well I decided to do some research, for the first time ever -as all of you know, I only write about the actual product not about where it was actually made as some of you brilliant people do, so I have spent most of today 26/9/07 researching the great green vegetable "the broccoli" (as I don't have to be in work till 4.30p.m) so I hope you find my research a good read.
I am mad on greens, I love cabbage, runner beans, peas and of course I love broccoli but the strangest thing too is that my children loves it. I always buy it frozen because I find to be very convenient and always handy if you looking for a meal to make, as often I have found myself to rummage through the cupboards looking for a half decent meal for the kids and end up taking the last of all my vegetables out of the freezer and making a cooked dinner. Now I do like frozen broccoli but on one occasion (while shopping online) I decided that I would like to try fresh, so I conquered on and law and behold my shopping came and there it was this rather large bag of fresh broccoli, I am so useless with weight that I ordered quite a lot of it, it cost me £2 which was a bargain but I had to get rid of it fast because as you know fresh don't last as long.
Now I will begin with my research on this amazing vegetable.
Broccoli has been around for more than 2000 years, The name "broccoli" comes for the Latin word brachium, which means "branch," or "arm." Americans have grown it in their gardens for only about 200 years! The first commercially grown broccoli was grown and harvested in New York, then planted in the 1920's in California. A few crates were sent back East and by 1925 the broccoli market was off the ground. This vegetable is highly recognized for its anti-cancer nutrients. It is a cruciferous vegetable and member of the cabbage family which is helpful in preventing certain types of cancer.
*Now the word cancer to me is a scary one as my mum has had it twice, so I was quite shocked to hear that broccoli can prevent this.
Did You Know
That broccoli consumption has increased over 940 percent over the last 25 years! It's a good source of Vitamin A, and vitamin C, potassium, folacin, iron and fiber. Broccoli has as much calcium ounce per ounce as milk and contains a few important phytochemicals: beta-carotene, indoles and isothiocyanates. Phytochemicals prevent carcinogens (cancer causing substances) from forming. They also stop carcinogens from getting to target cells and help boost enzymes that detoxify carcinogens. So next time you sit down to eat and broccoli is on the menu. Remember it really is good for you!
*A lot of confusing words there I thought, so I will put it bluntly, a very good source of IRON and it is a very good laxative and of course very healthy for you.
How To Select Fresh Broccoli
Choose bunches that are dark green. Good colour indicates high nutrient value. Florets that are dark green, purplish, or bluish green contain more beta-carotene and vitamin C than paler or yellowing ones. Choose bunches with stalks that are very firm. Stalks that bend or seem rubbery are of poor quality. Avoid broccoli with open, flowering, discoloured, or water-soaked bud clusters and tough, woody stems.
*Now personally I didn't know that, so next time I visit Asda I will be certainly be making sure they are not yellow, lol.
Store broccoli unwashed, in an open plastic bag and place in the crisper drawer of refrigerator. It is best if used within a day or two after purchasing.
*Don't be like me and buy bucket loads and end up wasting most of it.
Fresh vs. Frozen
Packaged frozen broccoli differs from fresh in its nutrient content. The flower buds or florets are richer in beta-carotene than the stalks. Manufactures typically cut off most of the stalk before packaging it, so frozen broccoli may contain 35% more beta-carotene by weight than fresh broccoli. The downside is that frozen broccoli has twice as much sodium as fresh (up to 68 mg per 10 oz. package), about half the calcium, and smaller amounts of iron, thiamin, riboflavin, and vitamin C.
* Sodium: is for all who don't know is salt, which as you know too much is very bad for you, so fresh seem to be winning in my books.
Preparation and Cooking
The best way to cook broccoli is to steam, cook in the microwave or stir-fry with a little broth or water. These methods are better than boiling. Some of the vitamin and mineral content are lost from the vegetable and end up in the cooking water when they are boiled. Cooked broccoli should be tender enough so that it can be pierced with a sharp knife, and still remain crisp and bright green in colour
Eat florets as a nutritious snack. Try them with a low-fat dip, or include them in your favourite salad. Think about adding two vegetables to your dinner menu, and include broccoli or another cruciferous vegetables several times a week.
This is a laugh, I have never cooked fresh broccoli and when I was looking at it I got kind of scared as all the research I did today could have come in handy. So what did I do? Call my mother -in -law of course. The first thing she said was what a good girl I was in buying fresh and that I will never go back to frozen. Which I would agree but I really need to learn how to weigh first. And then she went on to tell me how to cook it.
Firstly cut the florets, then add to salt water (pinch) and boil for 5 minutes, I repeat 5 minutes no longer as they will all come away and you will end up with soggy broccoli.
I cooked my broccoli (as instructed by mother-in-law) and served on a plate with carrots (fresh) potatoes, chicken and gravy mmm
While digging into my Sunday dinner and noticed that the broccoli was in fact very greener that frozen and the texture was indeed less soggy in fact it wasn't soggy at all. On tasting it I noticed that it was a lot crunchier than frozen and the taste was a great deal stronger.
I have to say that I am really happy that I tried fresh broccoli, it tastes so much better than frozen, it takes less time to cook and indeed is a lot much better for you, even though I do find the frozen to be more convenient, after reading and researching about frozen and the amount of salt it contains, I thing I am going to be a fresh chic for some time.
I have put together a few recipes for you guys who don't like broccoli (like my husband) and maybe sway to eat it.
Beef Broccoli Stir Fry
2 tablespoons of soy sauce
1 tablespoon of cornstarch
1 tablespoon of distilled white vinegar
1 tablespoon of minced fresh ginger
1 teaspoon of minced garlic
1/4 teaspoon of red pepper flakes
3/4 pound of lean round steak
2 teaspoons of vegetable oil, divided
1 small bunch broccoli
2 carrots, sliced diagonally, 1/8 inch thick
1 bunch green onions
3/4 cup of beef broth or water
Combine first 6 ingredients in bowl; stir until mixed. Slice steak across the grain 1/8 inch thick; toss with soy mixture and let stand 10 minutes. Meanwhile, cut broccoli florets from steam; peel stems and slice 1/4 inch thick. Heat wok or large skillet over high heat; add 1 teaspoon oil. When almost smoking, add beef and stir-fry 1 minute, remove beef. Add remaining 1 teaspoon oil. Add vegetables, stir-fry 1 minute. Add broth and cook, scraping bottom of wok until vegetables are tender, 5-7 minutes. Return beef to wok and heat through. Serves 4.
Low Fat Broccoli Dip
One 16 ounce carton of Light sour cream
One 10 ounce package or box of frozen broccoli, thawed & drained
1 can of sliced water chestnuts, chopped
1 package of Knorr or Lipton vegetable soup mix
Mix all ingredients and chill 2 hours before using. Serve on party rye or pumpernickel or allowed crackers.
I hope you enjoyed reading my review. :)