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The Benefits of Broccoli: Raw Food Soup and Salad Recipes the Whole Family Will Love

Posted Jul 26 2012 9:38am
Written by Tera on July 26, 2012 – -

We all know broccoli is good for us, but how many of us may have slacked off on the advice to “eat your broccoli” in lieu of some of the leafy powerhouses like kale, Swiss chard and spinach?  Don’t get me wrong, those leafy greens are tops in my house.  But, broccoli is also a staple, and there is way more nutrition packed into those familiar green florets than you may have imagined!

Like other cruciferous vegetables, broccoli contains phytonutrients, such as isothiocynates, believed to ward off cancer by deactivating a potent estrogen metabolite that promotes tumor growth, especially in estrogen-sensitive breast cells.  Broccoli also contains glucoraphanin, a phytonutrient that aids in the process of boosting the liver’s detoxification enzymes.  Additionally, when broccoli is cut, chewed or digested a sulfur-containing compound called sinigrin is brought into contact with the enzyme myrosinase, which results in the release of compounds known inhibit cell division.  WHOA!

  We haven’t even gotten to the basics of broccoli, like the fact that it is rich in many heart-healthy nutrients such as quercetin, fiber, folic acid, vitamin B6, vitamin E, niacin, magnesium, potassium and omega 3 fatty acids.  Broccoli promotes digestive health, good vision, and strong bones.  Just writing this makes me want to fill a huge salad bowl with some chopped broccoli!

But wait… did you know that broccoli sprouts are estimated to contain 10-100 times the nutrients of mature broccoli?  Forget that salad bowl … let’s get out the sprouting jar! While we are waiting for those sprouts, here are my favorite recipes using broccoli:

  • 1 cup minced broccoli florets
  • ½ medium avocado, diced
  • 12 kalamata olives, pitted and chopped
  • 1 medium carrot, minced
  • 1 tomato, diced
  • Toss into a bowl and mix well with your favorite dressing.  We like to mix minced garlic, lemon juice and olive oil with sea salt and stir into the salad.

  • 1 1/2 cups raw cashews, soaked
  • 1 small onion, diced
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 heads of broccoli, chopped into bite-size florets
  • 1/8 teaspoon fresh ground nutmeg
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground mustard seeds
  • fresh ground black pepper to taste
  • 3 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons tamari
  • about 4 cups of water
  • Throw all ingredients into a high-speed blender, leaving out about 1 cup of the chopped broccoli.  Blend until smooth.  Add water as needed to get a thick, creamy soup consistency.  Continue to blend until warm.  In my blender, this takes about 1 minute.  Pour into bowls and stir in chopped broccoli.  Season to taste.

    Okay, those broccoli sprouts should be ready by now.

    Here are a few ways to enjoy your broccoli sprouts:

  • Toss into your salad
  • Toss into a smoothie
  • Stir into hummus, guacamole or other dips
  • Toss with a little sea salt and just enjoy
  • Make a broccoli dip bar.
  • This is my daughter’s favorite thing to do.  Create several dressings or dips and create a “dip bar”.  Have broccoli sprouts and other cut up veggies to dip into all the concoctions.  Takes a little more work than just popping them into your mouth.  But, it gets my daughter to eat a lot of sprouts when she has all those different dips to try.

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