How to cook tasty broccoli, Brussels sprouts, red cabbage

LOS ANGELES

Larry Nicola, owner of Nic's Beverly Hills, suggests a trip to the farmers market to get excited about some of the least-liked veggies.

"I like to kind of get out of the box a little bit, and I think it first starts with learning about these vegetables," said Nicola.

In their natural form, they're hard, dense and chewy, so Nicola says you need to slice them up a little bit, add a little sauce, and go well beyond boiling.

"Grilling, sautéing, blanching them so they're bright green, makes it even more interesting," said Nicola.

Take broccoli or broccolini and blanch it, meaning a quick boil and then shock it in cold water. Put it in a sassy marinade. But if texture bothers you, blend up a tasty soup.

"You just keep the soup simple. You don't need butter, you don't need creams. You just take sautéed onion, a little garlic. Sauté the vegetable, chicken stock, puree, salt and pepper," said Nicola.

When it comes to Brussels sprouts, Nicola uses the leaves to make a tasty salad. Add some almonds, tangerines, salt and pepper, and then toss with a sesame, soy, ginger dressing.

Or you can use them in grilled kebabs of Brussels sprouts, chicken, tomato and a little bit of cumin for spice.

For red cabbage, he uses an Eastern European influence where bacon is involved.

"You cook it down with bacon, apples for sweetness, onions, a little bit of vinegar," said Nicola.

He cooks it down for about a half hour. He adds a dollop of sour cream and sausage for a complete dish.

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