Presidents may push it around their plate, but new research shows broccoli belongs in your stomach. The leafy green vegetable contains a chemical that may block stomach ulcers and stomach cancer. Plus, it's no slouch in the vitamin or taste departments. This Recipe Revue is full of delicious, inventive ways to eat broccoli.
Good For Your Stomach
Former President George Bush made headlines when he confessed that he did not have a taste for broccoli and his son, current President George W. Bush is said to feel the same about the dark green member of the cruciferous family.
But the Bush clan might not know what they're missing. According to new research from an international team led by scientists at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, a chemical in broccoli called sulforaphane appears to be a potent treatment for the bacteria, H. pylori, that causes stomach ulcers. What's more, it may protect against stomach cancer. The research is ongoing. The findings are particularly important for the developing regions of Asia, Africa and Latin America, where antibiotics are scarce and stomach ailments are especially common. In fact, stomach cancer is the main cause of death from cancer in those areas.
How Much Is Enough?
So how much broccoli should you eat?
"Our calculations were that the levels which were effective would be easily achieved by eating a serving of either broccoli sprouts (one ounce/ 28 grams) or broccoli (100-150 grams/ three-five ounces)," Dr. Jed Fahey, the study's lead author, told FoodFit.
Dr. Fahey also said for the most part, cooking should not alter the benefits of eating broccoli.
An Italian Favorite
The Italians embraced broccoli long before modern scientists. It's been a culinary darling there since the Roman times. Nowadays, it's popular here too. Broccoli is so versatileit's tasty raw and cookedits sweet tenderness is a great addition to many dishes. Plus, kids love eating the "little green trees."
Broccoli is available year-round and keeps well. It is incredibly nutritious. A cup of cooked, chopped broccoli has more Vitamin C than a navel orange. The vegetable is also packed with vitamin A and calcium.
Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes and Broccoli from famed San Francisco-based chef Joyce Goldstein is a great way to celebrate broccoli. The classic combination of pesto and pasta are enlivened by the addition of broccoli and new potatoes. Or try Joyce's delicious Tagliarini with Smooshed Broccoli, Toasted Pine Nuts and Pecorino. The name says it all.
Just pairing broccoli with pasta like Conchiglie with Broccoli is always a sure-fire success. Garlic, red pepper and grated Parmesan add a flavor punch.
Sturdy in Stir-Fry
Broccoli holds its own in stir-fries and our Chinese Cabbage, Carrot and Broccoli Stir-Fry is a prime example. In this simple recipe, crisp vegetables are seasoned with garlic and ginger and then stir-fried in peanut oil. You can also make this tasty, quick and easy supper with shrimp.
Crudités and Soups
When it's too hot to cook, fresh broccoli florets are a refreshing option. Serve them alongside other raw veggies like carrots and zucchini with cooling Curried Yogurt Dip or Lemon-Dill Cucumber Dip for the perfect summertime fare.
Broccoli is an important part of the medley in Washington, DC, chef Bob Kinkead's Summer "Salad" Soup. It's a pot of soup that contains just about everything your garden grows. Or try broccoli center stage in Broccoli Soup with Lemon Cream.
Treat your stomach and taste buds to these delicious broccoli recipes:
Pasta with Pesto, Potatoes and Broccoli
Tagliarini with Smooshed Broccoli, Toasted Pine Nuts and Pecorino
Conchiglie with Broccoli
Chinese Cabbage, Carrot and Broccoli Stir-Fry
Shrimp Stir-Fry with Chinese Cabbage, Carrots and Broccoli
Curried Yogurt Dip
Lemon-Dill Cucumber Dip
Bob Kinkead's Summer "Salad" Soup
Broccoli Soup with Lemon Cream