I was a tiny bit disturbed by this week’s BSI ingredient. Broccoli doesn’t usually find its way into my cart. It’s not that I hate it. At one time it was a favorite. For a couple of years I ate broccoli almost every day, sometimes twice a day. I think it was a lifetime’s worth of broccoli for the average person. When this long broccoli binge wore off I never wanted to look at broccoli again. But I must admit I really enjoyed eating these cornflake encased broccoli dippers – the perfect vessel for the thick and creamy, spicy cheese sauce.
To make them the broccoli ‘trees’ are dipped into egg and then into cornflake crumbs and baked rather than fried. I like to leave some of the stalk on for holding on to when you dip. While the trees are cooking make the cheese sauce. The jalapeno is very mild, you can grill it first to bring out a little more heat or omit it all together.
This week’s BSI (Blogger Secret Ingredient) is broccoli, chosen and hosted by the very sweet Chaya of Chaya’s Comfy Cook. Chaya is fairly new to blogging. If you haven’t paid her a visit stop by and say hi. She has been cooking up a storm of delicious food.
Crispy Broccoli Dippers and Cheese Sauce
Fresh broccoli (about 1 and 1/2 pounds)
1 tablespoon milk
Sea salt and fresh pepper
2/3 cup cornflake crumbs
1 jalepeno, minced, seeds and ribs removed
2 cloves garlic
1 tablespoon butter
1 tablespoon flour
2/3 cup whole milk
8 ounces extra sharp white cheddar cheese, shredded or cubed
Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
Wash and dry the broccoli. Cut the broccoli head apart into stalks. In a small bowl whisk the egg and milk. Season with salt and pepper. In another small bowl add the cornflake crumbs. Spray a large baking sheet with non-stick spray. Dip the ends of the broccoli into the eggs and then into the cornflake crumbs one by one. Set on baking sheet. Bake for 20 – 25 minutes until crispy and broccoli is tender.
While the broccoli is baking start the cheese sauce. In a small saucepan saute the jalepeno and garlic in a bit of olive oil until soft and tender. Season with salt and pepper. Add the butter, melt and add the flour. Whisk until well combined. Let cook for about two minutes. Slowly whisk in milk. Bring just to a simmer and then add half the cheese. Whisk until melted and add the rest of the cheese. Whisk again until all the cheese is melted and sauce starts to thicken, about 2 to 3 minutes. Taste and season again with salt and pepper if needed. Remove from heat and serve with the crispy broccoli.