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Veggie of the Week - Broccoli Spigarello
sponsored by Coleman Farms

"Not broccoli!". Yes, and no: it's Broccoli Spigarello, a variety producing masses of leaves and tiny florets. You'll recognize the taste, but it's more concentrated and focussed than broccoli florets, without any of the acid undertone often found there. And the texture is completely different - a fairly fleshy leaf, not slippery like spinach and apparently without the difficulties sometimes presented by standard issue broccoli: sources say 'our kids will eat it'.

Its strong but not dominant flavor mixes well with other cooked greens, and it would work very well in either a 'white' or a 'red' lasagne, or in ravioli or calzone. Like kale and cabbage, it goes well with beans and is happy in minestra.

Use the leaves and florets - the stems below the leaf are generally very woody, but might be used for stock. Chiffonade the leaves, stem and all, or strip larger leaves from their stems and use without chopping. This is particularly effective in soup or pasta dishes.

Available from Coleman Farms (Thursday, Friday, and Saturday) at Santa Barbara area Farmers' Markets.

Recipies from the web:

Together with the SLO recipie, the picture in the benessere page shows you what you need to know to make Zuppa ribollita. We could substitute Spigarello for the Cavolo Nero, and plain green cabbage for the Cavolo verza.

Note that the Walgreen's recipie mentions cold weather, but the fresh beans make it a summertime dish. In Winter, use dried beans, as slocounty and benessere do.


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