George Bush Sr. does not like broccoli. In fact, he was famously quoted as saying:
”I do not like broccoli. And I haven’t liked it since I was a little kid and my mother made me eat it. I am President of the United States, and I’m not going to eat any more broccoli.”
Well, I am certain he has never eaten broccoli like this. By now you may have caught onto my slightly maniacal roasting obsession. When properly cared for, B list vegetables get an instant upgrade with a high heat roast in the oven. The most important thing about getting this broccoli right is that it be as dry as you can get it. Moisture, after all, is the enemy of browning.
You can wash the broccoli and allow it to air dry, you can pat it dry with a clean towel, or…. wait for it…. skip washing the broccoli. Before you think the anti-shower-chic vibe of Williamsburg has gotten to me, consider that no bacteria would survive in a 400 degree oven. Really, this should not be a concern.
The result is supremely seasoned, garlicky roasted broccoli with a tender interior and crispy browned exterior. It is salty and lemony and delicious.
This one’s for you.
GEORGE BUSH BROCCOLI
2 large heads broccoli, THOROUGHLY dried, stems removed and large florets cut
2 garlic cloves, peeled and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons olive oil
zest from 1 lemon
juice from 1/2 of that lemon
1 teaspoon kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon fresh pepper
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Spread broccoli out on a large baking sheet. Drizzle with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Add lemon zest and toss thoroughly to coat each floret with oil, zest and seasoning.
Add garlic slices and toss one more time.
Remove from oven and, while still very hot, add lemon juice.
Toss and serve.