My heart always sinks a little as I watch the water turn purple and the spears of purple sprouting broccoli drain of their hue when I boil or steam them. What’s the point of buying a beautiful coloured vegetable that loses its colour on cooking?
My answer to the need I have for making my plate colourful, is to griddle them. I go through phases with the griddle pan. It comes out regularly when I have courgettes – cut into rings, griddled and sprinkled over pasta.
Griddling purple sprouting broccoli retains that stunning purple hue without losing the sweet, earthy flavour, adding that nice charred flavour as an additional note.
I always have a sense of urgency when I buy a bag of purple sprouting broccoli. You need to use them within a couple of days of buying, otherwise they lose their vibrancy and who wants to cheat a glorious vegetable by adding to a dish past its peak?
We are coming to the end of the season. This recipe is super fast. After work, I want to spend the time in the kitchen that it takes to listen to a podcast. Just enough time to transition – put the day away, eat something good and leave enough of the evening to do other things.
I’ve make this dish with whole wheat couscous because it is super speedy, but it is equally as good with wild and wholegrain rice.
I’ve given rough quantities for the miso dressing. As with all the dressings I make, the ratios depend on your palette. Switch it up according to what you are in the mood for, what works better for your taste buds – a little more sourness here, a little more of a salty taste there.
500g purple sprouting broccoli
200g wholegrain couscous
1 tbsp toasted sesame seeds to sprinkle
2tbsp coriander, roughly chopped
for the dressing
1 tbsp sesame oil
2tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp miso paste of your choice
1 tbsp cider vinegar or lemon juice
1 tbsp soy sauce
Heat a griddle pan on a medium heat. In a bowl place the broccoli, drizzle with some rapeseed or sunflower oil and toss. Season.
When the pan is ready, add the broccoli and cook until just starting to soften and a nice toasted crispy texture appears.
Add the tofu and do the same.
While you are cooking the tofu and broccoli, place the couscous in a bowl and season. Pour boiling water to 1cm above the couscous. Cover and allow to sit for ten minutes, or until you are ready to serve. Once ready, stir through the chopped coriander.
For the miso dressing, simply place all the ingredients in a jar and shake until emulsified.
Serve in a bowl or on a plate and drizzle the miso dressing over the top. Add a final earthy flourish with a sprinkle of toasted sesame seeds.