My week days consist of me telling people they can’t eat broccoli.
Or brussel sprouts or kale or god-forbid any greens – including but not limited to turnip and collards. And do not even think about spinach.
But I feel really bad about the broccoli.
I blame the drug they’re on…it is the main reason. Or perhaps it’s their heart that isn’t functioning as it should or maybe they have blood clots in their legs or lungs or somewhere in-between or perhaps it because they had a knee replaced….I place the blame on one of the above….but I think the patients blame me. Because I am telling them ‘ no dark green vegetables’. I am the bad guy. If only vegetables didn’t contain vitamin K…because that is the true suspect.
It is hard to be angry at a vitamin…
The other month (yes, I made broccoli salad weeks ago and just haven’t found the time to post ) when I was explaining to an elderly women and her daughter, with whom she lived, that she would need to hold off on the broccoli, she turned to her daughter and shouted (either from pure distress over no broccoli or she damn near deaf…) ” DOES THAT MEAN NO MORE BROCCOLI SALAD FROM HEINENS’?!?!?!?! (note: Heinen’s is a local grocery store with a lovely prepared food/salad bar and their produce is top- notch, but their parking lots are death traps and they don’t let you remove their carts from the store…drives me bonkers) She was visibly upset by this fact. And I instantly had to agree with her…that stuff is like crack.
Dopamine triggering goodness. Bacon, cranberries, red onion, creamy dressing, and of course – crunchy, vitamin K rich broccoli. I felt the need to hug this lovely old women, with graying hair, and wrinkly thin skin…because I too, would be unconsolable.
Honestly, I hadn’t given broccoli salad much thought in some time…I am not a frequent salad bar at the grocery store type. I grab my veggies, coffee, head down the baking aisle for flour and sugar, grab my almond milk, eggs, and butter in the dairy and I am out the door…But I knew of the concoction she was mourning over. I’ve been to summer picnics and church dinners…places where broccoli ALWAYS makes an appearance. And I have had my fill…trust me. And it is delicious.
The thought of broccoli salad stuck with me and before long I found myself in my kitchen rendering bacon, chopping onion, and nibbling on cranberries…I needed a fix before I got too old and needed to be placed on Coumadin, which I think is the prize that is awarded for becoming elderly. Can. Not. Freaking. Wait.
Until then…I am loading up on broccoli salad. I think you should too.
- 2 Heads Broccoli, stems removed and florets chopped into bit sized pieces
- 1/2 lb Bacon
- 2/3 Cup Cranberries
- 1/2 Cup Walnuts (or pecans or almonds)
- 1/2 Small Red Onion, diced or thin half moons
- Salt and Pepper to taste
- 1/2 Cup Buttermilk, well shaken
- 1/3 Cup plus 2 Tablespoons Mayonnaise
- 2 Tablespoons Apple Cider Vinegar
- 1-2 Tablespoons Sugar
- 2-3 Tablespoons finely diced red onion
- Pinch of salt and Pepper
- Preheat oven to 350F. Spread walnuts (or your nut of choice) evenly on a baking sheet. Place in preheated oven for about 5-8 minutes until fragrant (keep close eye). Remove from oven and let cool and then roughly chop. Set aside.
- Place a large skillet over medium heat and cook bacon until brown and crispy. Place bacon on a paper towel lined plate to absorb extra grease. Let cool and then roughly chop.
- In a large bowl, combine bit sized broccoli florets, bacon, cranberries, roasted walnuts, and red onion. Toss to combine. Salt and pepper to taste.
- In a large measuring cup or bowl, combine ingredients for dressing and whisk to combine – if you would like a thicker dressing, decrease buttermilk and increase mayonnaise.
- Pour over salad and toss to combine. Add salt and pepper to taste as needed.
- Place in refrigerator to chill. Serve cold.