- [Instructor] Eating healthy doesn't have to be a challenge.
There are simple and easy ways to add vegetables to your diet.
Through the Penn State Extension Nutrition Links Produce Video Series, you will learn how to buy, store, cook, and enjoy a variety of produce.
In this video we will look at broccoli.
Broccoli is in season June through November.
It has deep green flower buds, or florets, resembling a tree.
Both the flower and stalk are edible.
Broccoli is a versatile vegetable eaten raw, cooked, steamed, baked, or roasted.
It can be eaten alone or mixed into many dishes.
1/2 cup serving of broccoli is only 15 calories.
Broccoli is an excellent source of vitamin C and a good source of vitamin A and dietary fiber.
Eating broccoli can help lower the risk of cancer, help the immune system work properly, and help wounds heal faster.
Good quality broccoli has firm, compact clusters on the flower portion that are dark green or almost blue or purple in color.
Select broccoli with the flower buds tightly closed.
When selecting avoid limp or wilted broccoli.
Particularly ones with flower buds soft enough to easily open.
Overly mature broccoli will have flower buds opening and yellow.
Also avoid any broccoli that is slimy or will be cut in overly brown.
Store your broccoli uncut and unwashed in your refrigerator in an unsealed or perforated plastic or paper bag, in a moisture controlled vegetable drawer.
Use broccoli within three days of purchase date to limit nutrition loss.
Preparing fresh broccoli for various recipes is quick and easy.
To use raw, wash under running water, and cut into finger-sized pieces that will look like mini trees.
The left over stalks can be peeled as you would a potato.
Chop the stalk and use it in soups and casseroles.
To steam broccoli cook it for five to eight minutes until tender when pierced with a fork and bright green.
Here's a recipe that's easy to make and delicious.
Broccoli and cauliflower with a touch of lemon.
For this recipe, you will need 1/2 a small head of cauliflower, two cups broccoli, two tablespoons lemon juice, one table spoon olive oil, one clove garlic, two teaspoons fresh parsley.
First, wash the broccoli and cauliflower.
Cut them into bite-sized chunks and then steam them.
While the vegetables are steaming, make the dressing.
In a sauce pan, mix lemon juice, oil, and garlic, and cook over low heat for two or three minutes.
Once the vegetables are steamed, scoop into a serving bowl, spoon on sauce, and toss.
This recipe makes six 1/2 cup servings.
It's high in vitamin C, and also a good source of dietary fiber and vitamin A.
So remember, eating broccoli is a way to improve immune health and lower the risk of cancer.
It's in season June through November.
It can be cooked or eaten raw, and at the store you should always look for broccoli that's firm and dark green.
For more information on Pennsylvania produce, visit nutrition links on the Penn State Extension website.