Lately, I’ve been making and bringing composed lunchboxes to school as a way for my friends to try out recipes I’ve been testing. It’s a good way for me to see what dishes hold up, improve with time and are temperature sensitive. The other day a handful of people asked me to bring them lunch and I happily agreed. I went grocery shopping in search of produce to fill the boxes and picked up some broccolini without much thought. I’m not quite sure If I had even made broccolini prior to this moment but something made me gravitate toward the blossoming young broccoli. I had a feeling my friends would be more hesitant to try this dish than the others but figured it was worth a shot. Luckily, I was wrong. Turns out, everyone loves broccolini. I have, no exaggeration, made this dish ten times since. It’s hearty, savory and easy. The harissa dressing adds a pleasant kick and a bold flavor dimension.
- 2 Bunches of Broccolini (about 10 stems)
- 1/4 cup shaved Ricotta Salata
- 1 Lemon
- 3 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1/3 cup thinly sliced red onion
- 1 cup red wine vinegar
- 2 tbsp granulated sugar
- 2 tbsp harissa paste
Preheat oven to 450
Do ahead: Add thinly sliced red onion, red wine vinegar, sugar and salt to a bowl and cover. Place in fridge for 3-4 hours or preferably overnight. When done, the onion should be very red in color and slightly sweet to taste.
Wash and trim broccolini, cut stems in half lengthwise.Toss broccolini with olive oil in a bowl- you can eyeball this- all pieces should be lightly coated with the oil but not drenched, you may have to use more or less. Season broccolini with salt and pepper and spread out on a lined baking sheet. Cook until crisp and lightly browned but not too dark in color (about 25 mins but may vary so keep checking). Once the broccolini is done place in a bowl and let cool, then add the ricotta, red onions and zest of one lemon. Mix harissa, one tablespoon of lemon juice and honey in a bowl and drizzle over cooked broccolini. Season to taste.