broccoli pilaf with pomegranate and almonds

broccoli pilaf

This is a super easy and most delicious way to eat broccoli. Its low in carbs and only takes a few minutes to cook. Broccoli is also a super food, so I’m game for any new and exciting ways to eat this highly nutritious vegetable.

It’s the last day of February and I can’t believe how quickly the year is racing by. If it weren’t a leap year, today would me March. I’m also well on my way to making a few radical changes to my lifestyle and eating regime. I simply have to. All these years of over indulging, restaurant eating, cookbook writing and generally out of control eating habits have caught up with me and my body is taking strain. I’ve been down this road a few times in the past, but somehow this time it’s been way harder. Maybe because my life is so completely entrenched in food and all things delicious, or maybe it’s that I spent far too long on the dark side of hedonist living, but reigning it in and making these changes has been very difficult.

They say it takes 21 days to change habits and after 4 weeks at this, I’m starting to feel significantly better and into the groove of things. I’ve added new workout classes to my exercise regime and generally upping the cardio stuff. I’ve even bought a sports costume and have hit the pool to swim a few lengths. It has been VERY challenging. I used to be a mad keen hiker and could get up Lions Head easily in 45 minutes, so I’m desperately trying to claw my way back to being that person. I know it’s going to take a very long time, but a long journey begins with the first steps.

If you knew me you would know that I’m completely and utterly anti any kind of fad diet. You will never catch me cutting an entire food group and adding vast amounts of fat to keep me satiated. That is just plain silly. It is imperative for me that I do this in a way that I can maintain forever and still enjoy delicious food. Food is my biggest interest, passion and adventure. So it’s all about balance, health and all the stuff we all really know deep down is good for us. I tend to believe – and I know this is the case with me, that portion control is one of the most important things here. I was eating way too much food. I’m now eating small portions of really good quality unprocessed food that resembles what it looks like in nature. Whole grain, low GI (where possible), free-range meat, fresh seafood and ton of vegetables. I mean tons.

broccoli pilaf

A friend who is a super healthy eater gave me this recipe. She made it for dinner along with a piece of grilled salmon and it was heavenly. By now we have all figured out that you can cook vegetables to imitate carbs. Like cauliflower cous cous, zucchini noodles or sweet potato noodles. These and variations of these are full on staples in my house, and this broccoli pilaf is getting added to the list. Its vegetarian, its vegan and its all good.

The recipe calls for coconut oil which is nice, but I find it leaves a slight taste, so I prefer to use olive oil.

Recipe served 4 – 6 as a side dish

  • 1 large head of broccoli
  • 1 Tbsp olive oil or coconut oil
  • 1 shallot or half a white onion, finely chopped
  • 1 – 2 cloves garlic, crushed
  • 1 tsp miso paste dissolved in 1/4 cup boiling water, or 1/4 cup stock
  • 50gms flaked almonds, toasted
  • handful pomegranate seeds
  • sea salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper

Cut the broccoli into 8 pieces and then divide into 2 batches. Blitz each batch in a food processor using the pulse setting until the resemble large grains. Be careful not to over process this. You don’t want to end up with a mushy paste.

Heat a large non stick frying pan with oil and fry the onion over a low heat until its softened and just starts to caramelise. About 5 minutes. Add the garlic and briefly fry (about 30 seconds).

Add the broccoli and toss to coat in the onion and a garlic. Cook for about a minute.

Add the stock / miso stock and cook for about 2 – 3 minutes stirring constantly. The broccoli should still have some texture but would have lost the raw taste.

Season well with sea salt flakes and black pepper.

Serve with the pomegranate seeds and flaked almonds scattered over the top or lightly stirred through.

 

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11 Responses to broccoli pilaf with pomegranate and almonds

  1. Jacqui February 29, 2016 at 4:26 pm #

    Yum

  2. Laura (Tutti Dolci) March 1, 2016 at 12:56 am #

    I’m all for healthy eating when it looks this good! Love the pomegranates and almonds with the broccoli.

  3. Sarah // The Sugar Hit March 1, 2016 at 5:56 am #

    The focus in these images? Perfection. xx

  4. lynne hoareau March 1, 2016 at 12:48 pm #

    This is my kind of food 🙂 Looks delicious and sounds so tasty with the almonds and pomegranates 🙂

  5. thebrickkitchen March 2, 2016 at 2:10 am #

    Love the sound of a broccoli salad like this, and the pomegranate is a perfect touch. Gorgeous photos too! Good luck with your healthy eating goals – I find it almost impossible to say no to afternoon cake or dessert, so that’s my challenge at the moment…

  6. Sam March 3, 2016 at 9:31 am #

    Its more of a broccoli side dish (lovely warm) vs a salad, and I agree with you on the cake front. I miss cake so very much. Sigh!

  7. Sam March 3, 2016 at 9:32 am #

    Thanks Sarah. Im LOVING my 85mm lens which goes to f 1.2 – so I get all that bokah.

  8. betty stardust March 3, 2016 at 12:34 pm #

    This salad looks really good! I wish you good luck with your goals! I am crazy about sweets but after feeling really bad for months I cut raffinated sugar completely…so I know the struggles of a new eating habit. Stay healthy!
    Many greetings from germany!

  9. Sam March 4, 2016 at 1:03 pm #

    Thanks Betty. Im off the sugar cravings (for the most part) and my apetite has shrunk so at least Im not constantly hungry.

  10. charmaine louw April 6, 2016 at 1:17 pm #

    Is it possible to replace the misho paste with something else?

  11. Sam April 6, 2016 at 2:47 pm #

    HI Charmaine, as I mention in the post you can just use chicken stock or veg stock.

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