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Simple Sides: Tenderstem Broccoli with Almonds & Anchovy Butter
Hello from Kent! It’s cold, frosty and I’m feeling the end of autumn as winter closes in much more here than in London. Aside from attending a brilliant dinner with The Small Holding at The Compasses Inn on Monday night, I’ve been staying at home, taking long, chilly country walks admiring the last of the golden leaves, and looking forward towards end of year eating. I’ve already put together my first Christmas Kitchen recipe of the year (!), and while I’m keeping it for the beginning of December which, for me at least, truly marks the start of the festive period, I know those of you reading this from across the pond will have your eyes on the next big holiday before Christmas starts: Thanksgiving. So, today I want to share a simple, but rather special side which would be perfect for your Thanksgiving table, but also would be great to serve alongside a good Sunday roast.
Anchovy butter is one of my favourite things to make and use. I first started making it to slather on toast to dip into soft boiled eggs as I do in my first cookbook Student Eats(ad) and now it is my go-to serve alongside most homemade breads, and even to just have on my toast in the mornings. It is literally as easy as blitzing anchovies (I like the ones packed in oil) together with some unsalted butter (the anchovies add enough of their own saltiness!) in a mini chopper (I don’t know what I would do without this one! ad) until smooth. It keeps really well in the fridge, and here it is incredible to toss grilled veggies in with the added crunch of toasted almonds.
I’ve made this a serves two side, as I’m usually making a roast for the two of us assuming that you’ve got other veg going on too (our Sunday roasts usually feature Tenderstem broccoli, roast parsnips, carrots and roast potatoes) but it is so easily scalable as long as your sheet pan is big enough. I find it is always easier working from recipes to scale things up than to cut them down, which is why I always tend to work in small batches!
This quick and easy grilled broccoli side is perfect with a big roast dinner, tossed with a simple anchovy butter and a scattering of toasted flaked almonds.
140g (5 oz) Tenderstem Broccoli
1 tsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
Freshly Ground Sea Salt and Black Pepper
55g (2 oz) Unsalted Butter
5 Anchovy Fillets, packed in oil
Small Handful Flakes Almonds
Pre-heat the grill / broiler to 200 degrees (390 farenheit).
Trim the broccoli stems to remove any hard bits of the bottom, and toss them together on a non-stick baking tray with the olive oil and a good amount of freshly ground sea salt and black pepper. Focus particularly on the heads to make sure the oil gets into the florets!
Place the tray until the grill for about 10 minutes until the stems of the broccoli are just tender, and the florets are starting to char.
Meanwhile, in a mini chopper blitz together the butter and the anchovies until smooth, and in a small frying pan over a medium high heat, toast the flaked almonds until just golden – keep an eye on them, toasting nuts can catch and burn in just moments!
Remove the broccoli from the grill and spoon over approximately half the butter. Store the rest in the fridge to enjoy on toast or for the next time you want to make broccoli. Sprinkle over the almonds and toss the broccoli around the tray until the butter is melted and has coated the broccoli and the nuts.
Transfer to a warm serving dish before bringing to the table.
If you live in the US where they sell almond slithers, they would be even better here than our British flaked variety!
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