Ever wonder what happens to all the broccoli stalks in the world? Most of them end up in the trash or the compost heap. But don’t be fooled by the stalks ugly appearance, there’s delicious “meat” inside that rough exterior. And from a health perspective, the stalk contains almost the same amount of nutrients as the florets, they’re just not as pretty.
The next time you’re chopping some spears of broccoli, instead of tossing the stalk, consider adding them to your dish. Cut the stalks into small rounds and they can be roasted or used in a stir-fry. Or shave them with a vegetable peeler and add raw to a salad. My kids would probably not go for raw stalks so I cooked them on the grill, kebab style. Anything on a stick is usually a recipe for success in our house, especially if the stick is long enough to poke one’s brother.
When I served the kebabs, no one could even guess what they were eating. Since the boys are so accustomed to seeing broccoli in the form of “little trees” they didn’t even recognize it. But they also thought the mushrooms were chicken so I’m not sure if it was pure ignorance or if they were just pulling my leg.
2 Tbsp hoisin sauce
2 Tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
1 tsp sesame oil
3-4 large broccoli stalks
1 package baby bella mushrooms, approx. 15
3 Tbsp vegetable oil
Salt & pepper
6-8 wooden skewers
Soak the skewers in cold water for about 30 minutes. In a small mixing bowl, combine hoisin sauce, soy sauce and sesame oil and set aside.
Meanwhile peel the outer layer off the stalks with a paring knife and trim off both ends.
Cut into ½ inch rounds. Cut large size mushrooms in half lengthwise, leave smaller ones whole. Place stalks and mushrooms into a mixing bowl and toss with oil and season with salt and pepper.
Preheat grill or grill pan to medium-high heat.
Remove skewers from the water and thread the vegetables onto the skewers, alternating pieces of mushrooms and broccoli.
Place kebabs onto grill and brush with marinade. Turn every five minutes and brush with more marinade.
And the VERDICT is:
Matthew (age 7): “I’m eating the whole thing”
Liam (age 5): “That is one good mushroom”
Dylan (age 5): “So bad! I’m not eating that”
Although Dylan was not a fan, he did taste the “chicken”.