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Big-Flavor Broccoli

Big-Flavor Broccoli

Chances are you’re trimming off and discarding way too much of your broccoli stems. This is our hands-down favorite way to cook the whole plant.


  • 1 lb. broccoli (about 1 large or 2 medium heads)
  • 5 Tbsp. extra-virgin olive oil, divided
  • 1 small red onion, cut lengthwise into ½"-thick slices
  • 6 oil-packed anchovy fillets
  • 1 oz. Parmesan, finely grated (about ¼ cup)
  • Lemon wedges (for serving)

Recipe Preparation

  • Preheat oven to 400°. Trim only the very bottom, woody part of broccoli stem. Peel tough outer layer from stem, from the florets down to the end of the stalk. Starting from stem end, cut broccoli at a 45° angle into ¾"-thick slices until you reach the florets. Break florets apart with your hands into bite-size pieces (this avoids getting bitsy trimmings all over the place).

  • Heat 3 Tbsp. oil in a large heatproof skillet over medium-high until shimmering. Add broccoli; season with salt. Cook, tossing occasionally, until broccoli is bright green and lightly charred, about 3 minutes. Transfer to a plate. Wipe out skillet.

  • Heat remaining 2 Tbsp. oil in same skillet over medium. Cook onion and garlic, stirring often, until onion is beginning to soften, about 3 minutes. Add anchovies and cook, breaking apart with a spoon, until broken down and garlic is beginning to turn golden around the edges, about 2 minutes.

  • Return broccoli to skillet and toss to coat with oil. Transfer to oven and roast, tossing once, until broccoli is browned and tender, 20–25 minutes. Wrap handle of skillet with a towel before you forget it’s REALLY HOT.

  • Scatter Parmesan over hot broccoli. Divide among plates. Serve with lemon wedges alongside.

Reviews SectionThis is our new favorite broccoli dish! It's so well balanced!AnonymousRedmond, WA06/11/20Quite delicious, anchovies with broccoli is something I would have never thought of. Not a super big fan of fishiness, so I halved the amount of anchovies, and the umami still shone through. However, the additional step of putting the dish in the oven, as others have mentioned, makes the dish a little more effort than I think it's really worth. The broccoli turns out quite mushy (as you might expect), and I generally prefer my broccoli crunchy. I may try this again just on the stove-top to see if I can get the same flavors with less fuss and crunchier broccoli.atimidtempestSacramento, CA06/08/20Different and great! During this pandemic period looking to expand on the usual suspects (ie: steamed broccoli with pesto, roasted broccoli, etc.) this really hit on all levels. Delicious and NOT fishy in our opinions. Just filled with flavor. ThnxmarnahoffmanRichboro, PA05/31/20This gets a big thumbs up! Not that much more work than plain steamed broccoli and absolutely delicious. Served it with some grilled chicken, but honestly, it would be great as a meal in itself.AnonymousColorado05/28/20Big-flavor broccoli lives up to its name. I see other people in the comments complaining about the fishiness of the anchovies, but in my opinion that's what makes this unique and absolutely delightful. I'm a vegetarian (with occasional lapses) due to health concerns, and that little bit of anchovy in there provides the saltiness that I crave all day long in addition to making the kitchen smell like heaven while it fries up. I might even do a little bit more anchovy the next time I make this, I'm that serious about it.heyguysitsmerobNorth Carolina05/21/20VERY fishy if you add all the anchovies. I only added three and they still fished that boy right up. Also, the red onions got very sweet, i would recommend maybe blanching them instead of frying before putting in the oven.I've made this recipe 3 times! I wasn't a fan of the time I made it with anchovies (too gritty!) But, the other two times I replaced the anchovies with a couple of tablepoons of fish sauce, and it is amazing. I love that burst of veggie, salty, and acidity that this combination brings. I paired it with some jasmine rice.valeriaanaMiami, FL04/29/20Whoa...I've made this 4 times in the last month. It's husband of 33 years has always really disliked broccoli, but I love it. I sneaked this on the menu one night because...well, I'm the culinary boss. He loved it!! He really, really loved it!! So did my kiddo. When I then revealed that it contained anchovies they gave me a fearful, skeptical look, but then got passed it. This recipe is a keeper! Super flavorful and fresh. Tones down the broccoli flavor in a very pleasing manner. Tip: I freeze left-behind anchovies, like I freeze my nuts, tomato paste and chilies-in-chipotle. They keep forever and you always have that teaspoon-or-so that you need without the waste!Julianne6Tarzana, CA04/19/20Really Really Good! I used 2 teaspoons of white miso instead of the anchovies, to impart some vegetarian umami flavour.A taste-machine! My husband and kids (under 8yrs) all gobbled it up. I didn't have red onions (Covid-19), so I used white, and the cooking+roasting made them so tender and sweet...the onions alone were worth the recipe.So delicious! We had anchovy paste so probably used less than six anchovies. Agree with another other reviewer that less oil would be OK. In any event, will definitely be part of the regular rotation.AnonymousBurlingame, CA03/30/20Broccoli is my absolute favorite vegetable so I loved this dish. However, I'd venture to say that this could easily convert any of the broccoli-shy out there as it is so delicious! Do not sleep on the anchovies because they add so much flavor to this dish, but not necessarily in a fishy way. Thanks BA for another great recipe!AnonymousSeattle, WA03/28/20Easy and DELICIOUS! For someone that is just starting to explore the wonders of cooking at home, I am grateful for this flavor packed meal. With the prevention of leaving home ("thanks" virus) I was not able to use anchovies, thus settling with a tsp of worcestershire sauce to get that anchovy flavor-- a pretty good flavor substitute in my opinion if you need to opt out of the anchovy. Super excited to make this again!inogurl3136Los Angeles, CA03/22/20Heck yes I would recommend this again. Big flavor was right! Best broccoli I’ve ever eaten? Not sure but it was really good!! Didn’t mention anchovies until the anti-anchovies had eaten. Made’em believers. Siskel and Ebert would give this two thumbs up (if you know In Living Color you should know that one).bigcatMIDEASTERN MIDWEST03/19/20SO damn good.Never did I think I'd enjoy anchovy with my roasted broccoli but I am here to tell you, HOT DAMN. Give this recipe a go and don't tell anyone you put anchovy in it, they'll never know ;) unless they've got a palette like Chris.purely reviewing so I can say- PEOPLE if you change 2/3rds of the ingredients, you are not reviewing this recipe you're reviewing an entirely different dish, it is truly unhelpful. I did make the recipe, exactly as written, and it was so good I made it again the very next dayThis was really good! I ended up using nutritional yeast instead of parm and put the lemons in the pan before the oven. The lemon may have steamed the broc a little more than Chris would approve of, nonetheless still delicious. Anchovies were probably the biggest game-changer. However, you could probably cut down on the olive oil by 1-2 tbls - a little greasy for my liking which is why I'm demoting to 4 stars. Served on the side with potato and leek soup.DarrahPState College, PA01/27/20I really liked the idea of adding some chicken breast to this recipe - perfect one-dish meal!AnonymousSooke, BC Canada01/17/20Everyone's tastebuds are genetically different per studies. For me, this dish was nothing special and would never make it again although I respect and appreciate those who loved it. Got the recipe from the magazine.This recipe converted both the anchovy and broccoli haters in my family. Definitely making this again!A really pleasant and balanced mix of flavours. Strong umami from the anchovies. Lemon adds some much needed brightness to the affair. Perhaps my roommate and I are just hungry boys but this was more like two serves for us. This may be nice with an additional protein, such as chicken.FerrisHansen123Stockholm, Sweden12/27/19I found that this dish was a lot of work for very little payoff. I make broccoli all the time so I made this on Christmas to switch things up. It was definitely the least-attended dish at the table (in a family of broccoli lovers, no less!) which wasn't promising. It's not bad, but it's not worth the extra effort compared to typical steamed and sautéed broccoli. "Big flavor" is certainly not how I would describe it! If I HAD to make it again, I would double the anchovies and add a few more garlic cloves, and put the lemons in for the last ten minutes in the oven to get them roasted and jammy.I also need to point out how ANNOYING it is to be combing recipe reviews while developing a holiday menu and find snippy people fighting about the "health" of various cooking oils. Please stop leaving reviews if you haven't made the dish - nobody cares what you think of our arteries!emily9206New Orleans12/26/[email protected] No, EVOO is not "HEALTHY!". It's fine that you use it but just don't kid yourself. It's totally artery clogging and choking your internal organs with visceral fat - along with ALL animal products. There is no such thing as a healthy oil. Healthy fats are nuts, seeds, avocado .AnonymousPalm Beach12/22/19I knew this was Morocco the moment I saw "bitsy" :). It's very good and well written instructions. I don't cook with oil (or fish OR cheese) and it still worked. I saute with water or stock. Thanks Chris!AnonymousPalm Beach12/22/19I adore this recipe. The first time I made it was exactly as written but added during the last ten minutes some chunks of cooked chicken breast--it made a delicious one-dish supper. The second time I used Romanesco broccoli (for the first time ever, in any dish) and it was fabulous. If you are able to find Romanesco broccoli in your stores, try it! It has great taste, more body, and really roasts well.

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