broccoliniWhen I was little, I ate only one vegetable–peas. Frozen peas forming a mound next to the mashed potatoes. I refused all green beans, unless they were pulled straight from out garden and cooked within 5 minutes. I was a vegetable brat. When I was about 7 years old, my mother’s vegetable recipe repertoire changed. We were living in a suburb of Dallas. She met and made friends with several women in the neighborhood and they formed a cooking group. And, soon after, broccoli appeared in our lives.

My mother would steam the broccoli in the microwave, then slap a hunk of butter and dust it with lemon pepper. I would eat only the “trees” as my cousin’s kids called the florets. My mother was patient–she knew my tastes would evolve some day.

Next, my mother brought home asparagus. I think she may have sold us my sisters on the idea that we could make our pee smell by eating it. Slowly, my vegetable wall tumbled, and broccoli deserves credit for being my gateway vegetable for Vegetable of the Year. Now, I’ve matured to broccolini and I eat the stems. But, strangly, I hate peas.

Grilled broccolini

Broccolini (3-4 stems for each diner)
Olive oil to coat
Espellete or pepper

Heat grill to 320-350 degrees. Dress broccolini with oil, salt and pepper. Place broccolini directly on the grates. Grill for 7 minutes. Flip and grill another 5-7 minutes.

By the way, we ate these with amazing Chipotle Pork Burgers.

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