Broccoli goodness – yeah! I LOVE broccoli but became quite curious a couple of years ago how to prepare a delicious meal with broccoli, which doesn’t involve cooking it to death. Which is, if we are honest, what most people do. Nearly all the nutricious goodness is gone after the boiling process, and whilst steaming seems marginally better, I wanted more crunch.
So the idea came along to eat raw broccoli! Indulging in some of my favourite pastimes – searching for food inspirations in the www (I call it foodling, not googling), I found what I was looking for.
A raw vegan broccoli salad! I was sold, and so I hope are you!
Reading through the ingredient list was intriguing as I couldn’t imagine how these flavours and textures would all come together to a harmonious dish. But, I was proven wrong and since then I’m hooked. I made this salad various times now, served it to friends and family and we all agree – it’s a keeper! Here it comes for you, tried and tested 🙂
Ingredients for 6
For the salad:
- 2 large broccoli crowns*, finely chopped
- 1 1/2 cups red grapes, seedless and halved
- 1/3 cup roasted almonds, chopped
- 1/3 cup dried raisins or cranberries
- 3/4 cup red onion, diced
For the dressing:
- 3/4 cup raw cashews, soaked 3-4 hours or ideally over night
- 1/4 cup water
- 2 Tbsp maple syrup
- 2 Tbsp apple cidre vinegar
- 1 garlic clove
- salt and pepper to taste
*Waste not – want not “nugget”
Don’t throw away the broccoli stems! Chop them up roughly and place the bits into a food processor and blitz them up until you get really small pieces. You’ll see in the next paragraph why.
Once you got the finely blitzed broccoli stems out of your food processor, spread the “pieces” out slightly and set aside for at least 90 minutes.
After than you can place all into an airtight food container an use it for your next broccoli soup, or as garnish sprinkled over salads, in sandwiches, or place it in the freezer for your next vegetable soup.
Did you know that we can reap the full cancer-fighting potential of broccoli’s sulphurophanes when we chop it finely and let it sit for up to 90 minutes? Exposing the finely chopped broccoli to air activates the enzyme that promotes sulforaphanes. Normally this enzympe is damaged when we cook or steam broccoli, but it is maintained when we eat broccoli in its’ raw form. What was suprising though to me was the fact that you can actually increase or promote sulforaphanes when you chop the broccoli and let it sit out for a good while.
The finer you chop it the better (you may even put it into a food processor and whizz it up) and the longer it’s out the better too.
You may keep this in mind when preparing soups, but for this raw broccoli salad it may not be the ideal “bite”size.
OK – let’s get to it!
- Finely chop the broccoli crowns and let it sit for at least 30 minutes.
- Lightly dry roast the almonds in a pan until they start releasing their nutty aroma and turning golden brown. Alternatively you can roast your almonds in an oven for max. 10 minutes at 180°C. Set aside to cool down slightly.
- Chop the opion and set aside.
- Wash and half the red grapes and set aside.
- Once the almonds are cooled down, chop them up roughly.
- Prepare the dressing by blitzing the drained cashew nuts, with all other dressing ingredients in a food processor or a Nutribullet until smooth and creamy.
- Now all ingredients can be mixed together in a large salad bowl. Toss the salad until the dressing evenly covers all ingredients.
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