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Steamed Broccoli with Lemon and Garlic

Serves 4

I love broccoli. Since I am not crazy about steamed vegetables, I usually roast or sauté fresh broccoli. Sometimes, I purchase it frozen and heat it in the microwave. Well, this time I had fresh and wanted to do something very easy. So, I decided to steam it in the microwave, then add some simple seasonings for flavor. This is the recipe that evolved and it is absolutely delicious. My family liked it so much they requested it a week later, and again the following week. This is a quick, easy and healthy side dish that goes with almost any entree. See the notes below for cooking in a stove top steamer.

Steamed Broccoli Recipe Photo

Place the garlic and oil in a small bowl. Stir to cover all the garlic with the oil. Cover with a paper towel. Microwave on high for 30 seconds. Continue to microwave at 10 second intervals, checking each time, until the garlic is just tender. Set aside.

Clean the broccoli. Remove the dry, tough end of the stems. Slice the remaining stems into 1/2-inch pieces and cut the tops into florets. Place in a microwave-proof bowl with a couple tablespoons of water. Cover, leaving some space for steam to escape, and microwave on high until tender. (If you have a fresh vegetable setting on your microwave, you can use that. If the broccoli is not quite as tender as you like, give it another minute or more as needed on high heat.) Drain. Add the garlic and oil mixture, lemon juice, rind, salt, pepper and stir well. Microwave for one more minute. Add the Parmesan cheese and stir. Serve hot or room temperature.

Notes: Microwave times vary depending on wattage. Always start with less time and add more as needed. If you prefer to cook the broccoli in a stove top steamer, chop the garlic and steam it with the broccoli. When tender, remove from steamer and add the remaining ingredients.