A new eatery recently opened in the beating heart of Midtown NYC, it’s called The Little Beet and it focuses on gluten-free, non-GMO, fast-casual food. It has quickly become a favorite lunch spot for busy professionals, who want to eat healthy and nutritious food.
The fact that it’s located in Midtown, just a few blocks away from tourist-clogged Times Square - or as I like to call it 'Squareway to Hell' - should not hold you back from having lunch there (if you happen to be in NYC, of course!)
It’s a lovely little spot with an eco-friendly decor that includes detailed Compost-Recycling-trash bins and veggie-inspired artwork on the walls.
The menu has a great variety of choices. There are fresh salads (chinese cabbage! And hey, beets...), sandwiches served on Gluten-Free bread, a good selection of proteins and the most awesome side dishes I’ve ever laid my eyes on.
Grilled sweet potatoes with smoked sea salt and pecorino; toasted buckwheat with mushrooms, green onions & hazelnut; blistered green beans; heads of grilled radicchio; AND charred broccoli with garlic, chili pepper & lemon olive oil.
You guys believe in love at first sight? I’ve always been skeptical about it, but after the first bite of The Little Beet's charred broccoli, I think I’ve changed my mind.
I already love broccoli, but those were off the chain, over the moon delicious.
I'd happily eat all my lunches at The Little Beet, but unfortunately there is a drawback (well, more like two drawbacks, now that I’m thinking about it).
First off - as mentioned before - The Little Beet is located in Midtown, and seriously no one goes to midtown. It’s crowded and noisy and honestly just the thought of going there takes the life out of you.
The Little Beet is also quite expensive. I’m all about quality ingredients and don’t mind paying up for them, but $4.50 for one side and $11.50 for three? That’s a lot.
On top of that the portions are kind of small. As much as I believe that portion control is key to a healthy lifestyle — spending 25 bucks and leaving hungry...well...
So I’ve tried making Little Beet’s charred broccoli at home. And to be honest with you guys, I think I’ve nailed the recipe. Total show off btw.
This broccoli is amazing. Yes, I just called broccoli amazing.
Even if you are not to sure about broccoli, you gotta try this recipe. Not only it’s uber easy and has only few ingredients, it’s totally innovative and gives you a completely new perspective on broccoli. Trust.
Inspired by The Little Beet
2 heads of broccoli, cut into bite-size florets
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
2 garlic cloves, thinly sliced
1 red chili, deseeded and chopped
Juice of 1 lemon
Zest of 1 lemon
1 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
¼ teaspoon ground black pepper
Heat the olive oil in a small saucepan over low heat. Add garlic and chili and infuse for 5 minutes (you want to the garlic to brown a little not to burn). Turn off the heat and set aside.
In the meantime, fill a large bowl with cold water and a few ice cubes. Set aside.
Bring a pot of water to a boil, and carefully place the cut broccoli into the boiling water.
Blanch for 2 minutes — the broccoli should be bright green and firm though slightly softened - when you remove it.
Fish out the broccoli with a slotted spoon or small sieve or drain the broccoli in a colander.
Immediately place the broccoli in the ice bath to stop the cooking process.
Remove the cooled florets from the cold water after 30 seconds and strain them again in the colander.
Heat the remaining one tablespoon of olive oil in a large skillet over medium-high heat, add the blanched broccoli and char the edges of the broccoli, about 4 to 5 minutes stirring constantly.
Transfer to a bowl.
Combine the infused oil (discarding the garlic slices and the chili) with lemon juice, lemon zest, salt and pepper. Drizzle over the charred broccoli and serve.
One serving yields 165 calories, 14 grams of fat, 9 grams of carbs and 4 grams of protein.