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Broccoli Romanesco and Parmesan Puree


Broccoli Romanesco, which looks like a cross between broccoli and a coral reef, is a staple in Italy, but it's often available at farmers' markets in the United States. This garlicky puree can also be made with regular broccoli or cauliflower.

  • Servings: 8

Source: Martha Stewart Living, November 2007


  • 3 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 1/2 pounds broccoli Romanesco (2 to 3 heads), cut into 3/4-inch pieces (7 cups)
  • 4 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons water
  • Coarse salt
  • 1/2 cup whole milk
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons freshly grated Parmigiano-Reggiano, plus more for sprinkling
  • Freshly ground pepper, to taste


  1. Heat oil in a large skillet over medium heat. Add broccoli Romanesco and garlic, and cook until brightly colored and beginning to turn golden brown, about 8 minutes. Remove and reserve a few pieces for garnish. Add water and 1 teaspoon salt to skillet. Cover, and cook until tender, about 10 minutes. Drain any remaining liquid from skillet.

  2. Puree half the broccoli Romanesco in a food processor, and then transfer to a large bowl. Puree remaining broccoli Romanesco. Bring milk and cream to a gentle simmer in a saucepan. Add milk-cream mixture to food processor with puree, and pulse to combine. Stir mixture into first batch of puree.

  3. Stir in Parmigiano-Reggiano, and season with salt and pepper. Garnish with reserved broccoli Romanesco and more cheese. Serve immediately.

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