If you are lucky to have this precious vegetable around, do yourself a favor and grab one. You will be rewarded as you enjoy it in this delicious and straightforward Romanesco Broccoli Recipe.
Broccoli romanesco is often considered a gourmet vegetable and its use is still very limited. Like the cauliflower, romanesco belongs to the species Brassica oleracea, like cabbage romanesco, also belongs to the Brassicaceae family.
Romanescos can be green, violet, or orange in color and romanesco has a whole pyramid shape. romanesco is an edible flower.
Romanesco broccoli is a variety of broccoli with striking, fractal-like patterns in its florets. The head usually has what looks like small pinecone structures. When the vegetable grows to full size, it turns green and acquires thin stems. It is considered to be closer to cauliflower than broccoli in taste but with a broccoli flavor.
Optional: pepperoncini flakes
Check our post on steaming broccoli and cauliflower to learn how to make the best of your vegetables' nutritional value.
- Clean your Romanesco broccoli under running water.
- Cut the inside stem of the broccoli and the inside of the floret’s branches. Cut them one by one, so you keep the shapes of the florets. Broccoli Alla Romana
- After either steaming or boiling the florets, continue by drying them. Let them dry with or dry them up with a tablecloth.
- Heat the olive oil in a pan and stir fry the chopped garlic on medium heat for 30 seconds, until golden and add the broccoli florets.
- Add salt and pepper (or pepperoncino).
A Roman dish
We had this dish the first day we arrived in Rome. The Jewish Ghetto hosts a variety of Jewish-Roman restaurants with food to die for! Alessandro, our Roman friend, took us there to experience firsthand some of this community's signature dishes and the secrets to master their cooking.
We went to a Jewish restaurant and had a variety of terrific small dishes. I loved the double deep-fried artichokes and the Broccoli Romani in Padella.
Then, we decided to reproduce the Broccoli Romanesco recipe to avoid frying artichokes and keep the waistline while still possible. Make sure to try them on your next visit to Rome. They are wonderful.
Romano broccoli and fractals
This beautiful vegetable has some characteristics that make it very interesting from a mathematical point of view. First of all, it has a shape with a fractal appearance, repeating itself on different scales.
Its florets reproduce in miniature; the shape of the largest floret and the smaller flowers is precisely the same. I find it very interesting that the number of these elements is always a number that belongs to the Fibonacci sequence, a series in which each number is the sum of the previous two.
This cruciferous vegetable is highly nutritious and, as Science Says, is amongst the 3 of the Healthiest Foods You Can Eat. It has a lot of beneficial, healthy properties and very few calories.
Cooking the Romanesco broccoli
It is crucial to avoid overcooking this beauty. Otherwise, you will miss the opportunity to experiment with its texture and amaze your guests with its eye-catching color.
Steaming or boiling your broccoli? I prefer steaming.
If steaming: In a saucepan, set two fingers of water to boiling and put a metal or bamboo colander on top of the saucepan.
Place the florets on top of the colander and put a lid on top; leave them for 2 minutes.
If Boiling, put 4 cups of water to boil. When the water bubbles with big bubbles, add the broccoli florets and take them out after 30 seconds. Just blanch them.
More Italian simple recipes
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Recipe: Romanesco Broccoli
Optional (and recommended):
- Clean your Romanesco broccoli under running water.1 broccoli romanesco
- Cut the inside stem of the broccoli and the inside of the floret’s branches. Cut them one by one, so you keep the shapes of the florets. Broccoli Alla Romana1 broccoli romanesco
- After either steaming or boiling the florets, continue by drying them. Let them dry with or dry them up with a tablecloth.1 broccoli romanesco
- Heat the olive oil in a pan and stir fry the chopped garlic on medium heat for 30 seconds, until golden and add the broccoli florets.2 garlic cloves, 2 tablespoons olive oil
- Add salt and pepper (or pepperoncino).¼ teaspoon salt, pepperoncino
- Serve hot!
We sometimes take for granted that we have years (or decades) of cooking experience that the average visitor may not. Add to, or remove from, the list below with health and safety tips.
- Cook to a minimum temperature of 165 °F (74 °C)
- Do not use the same utensils on cooked food, that previously touched raw meat
- Wash hands after touching raw meat
- Don't leave food sitting out at room temperature for extended periods
- Never leave cooking food unattended
- Use oils with high smoking point to avoid harmful compounds
- Always have good ventilation when using a gas stove
The information shown is an estimate provided by an online nutrition calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional nutritionist’s advice. See our full Nutritional Disclosure here.
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