Steamed broccoli with beurre blanc

Steamed Broccoli

Serves 4-6

  • 200 ml white wine, preferably Chablis

  • 1 shallot, or ½ a red onion, peeled and finely chopped

  • a few leaves fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • a little fresh tarragon

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 4 black peppercorns

  • 2 heads broccoli, broken into florets

  • 170 g unsalted butter, diced

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper

Put your wine, shallot, herbs and peppercorns into a small pot and bring to the boil, then simmer slowly for 3 or 4 minutes or until reduced by half and remove from the heat. The first way to make your beurre blanc is to pour the flavoured wine through a sieve into a metal bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of water on a very low heat, whisk, and add the cubes of butter one at a time, whisking them in until all the butter has been used. The sauce will emulsify and look like a very loose custard. Use the beurre blanc immediately or keep whisking it over your pan of water. If you leave it too long, the sauce may split.



The second way, and this is my favourite, is to pour some boiling water into a Thermos flask to preheat and clean it. Pour the water away and then sieve the flavoured wine into the thermos, adding all of the butter. Put the lid on tightly, place a tea towel over the lid and shake the thermos around for a few minutes. Open it very carefully (in case of any hot steam escaping) and you should have a nice beurre blanc sauce. The best thing about this method is that you can keep it in the flask and it will keep warm until you're ready to serve the food.



Steam or boil your broccoli florets until they're soft but not overdone and mushy. Correct the seasoning of the beurre blanc and pour it over the steaming broccoli. For dinner parties it's quite nice to send out your plain steamed broccoli first, then if you've used a Thermos, take it out and pour it over – everyone will think you're mad. Happy days!

Nutritional Information

Steamed broccoli with beurre blanc

The classic French wine and shallot sauce, two ways

0 foodies cooked this
Take it from me, a delicate beurre blanc is one of those sauces you'll use again and again
Serves 4-6
15m
Not too tricky
Method

Beurre blanc is one of the first things I was asked to make in a commercial kitchen. It's a French sauce that is surprisingly delicate, and it goes well with any green veg, like asparagus, broccoli or mangetouts. There are many ways of making it, so I thought I'd show you the two that I find most convenient.

Put your wine, shallot, herbs and peppercorns into a small pot and bring to the boil, then simmer slowly for 3 or 4 minutes or until reduced by half and remove from the heat. The first way to make your beurre blanc is to pour the flavoured wine through a sieve into a metal bowl. Place the bowl over a pan of water on a very low heat, whisk, and add the cubes of butter one at a time, whisking them in until all the butter has been used. The sauce will emulsify and look like a very loose custard. Use the beurre blanc immediately or keep whisking it over your pan of water. If you leave it too long, the sauce may split.

The second way, and this is my favourite, is to pour some boiling water into a Thermos flask to preheat and clean it. Pour the water away and then sieve the flavoured wine into the thermos, adding all of the butter. Put the lid on tightly, place a tea towel over the lid and shake the thermos around for a few minutes. Open it very carefully (in case of any hot steam escaping) and you should have a nice beurre blanc sauce. The best thing about this method is that you can keep it in the flask and it will keep warm until you're ready to serve the food.

Steam or boil your broccoli florets until they're soft but not overdone and mushy. Correct the seasoning of the beurre blanc and pour it over the steaming broccoli. For dinner parties it's quite nice to send out your plain steamed broccoli first, then if you've used a Thermos, take it out and pour it over – everyone will think you're mad. Happy days!

Whether it's delicious vegetarian or vegan recipes you're after, or ideas for gluten or dairy-free dishes, you'll find plenty here to inspire you. For more info on how we classify our lifestyle recipes please read our special diets fact sheet, or or for more information on how to plan your meals please see our special diets guidance.

Nutritional Information Amount per serving:

Calories

Calories are just a unit of energy. If you eat more than you use you can gain weight, or lose it if you don't eat enough. How much you need depends on your weight, gender and how active you are, but it's around 2,000 a day.

Carbs

Carbs are a great source of energy and, excluding foods such as potatoes, are made from grains - like bread, pasta and cereal. We all need carbs, but try to make them all wholegrain by sticking to brown bread, rice and pasta - they are much more nutritious.

Sugar

We all deserve a treat sometimes, but try to limit your sugar intake. Most of your sugar should come from raw fruit and milk, because they give us lots of nutrients too. Always check food labels so you know how much sugar you're eating.

Fat

We all need to eat a small amount of fat because it protects our organs and helps us grow. But we need to be careful about how much fat we eat and what kinds of fat, because in higher levels it's associated with weight gain, diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

Saturates

Saturated or "bad fats" are in beef, pork, chicken skin, butter, cream and cheese. Too much can be bad for our heart and cholesterol levels, but unsaturated or "good fats" in fish, nuts, avocados and some oils can help keep our hearts healthy if eaten in moderation.

Protein

Protein helps our muscles to grow and repair, as well as providing you with essential amino acids. When it comes to protein, try to eat leaner sources such as chicken and fish or non-meat sources such as eggs, dairy, beans, nuts, seeds, tofu and pulses.
  • Calories 271
    14%
  • Carbs 5.4g
    2%
  • Sugar 3.1g 3%
  • Fat 23.7g 34%
  • Saturates 14.8g 74%
  • Protein 2.8g 6%
Of an adult's reference intake

BUYING SUSTAINABLY SOURCED FISH

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Buying sustainably sourced fish means buying fish that has been caught without endangering the levels of fish stocks and with the protection of the environment in mind. Wild fish caught in areas where stocks are plentiful are sustainably sourced, as are farmed fish that are reared on farms proven to cause no harm to surrounding seas and shores.

When buying either wild or farmed fish, ask whether it is sustainably sourced. If you're unable to obtain this information, don't be afraid to shop elsewhere – only by shopping sustainably can we be sure that the fantastic selection of fish we enjoy today will be around for future generations.

For further information about sustainably sourced fish, please refer to the useful links below:

Marine Stewardship Council
http://www.msc.org/

Fish Online
http://www.fishonline.org

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  • 200 ml white wine, preferably Chablis

  • 1 shallot, or ½ a red onion, peeled and finely chopped

  • a few leaves fresh flat-leaf parsley

  • a little fresh tarragon

  • 1 bay leaf

  • 4 black peppercorns

  • 2 heads broccoli, broken into florets

  • 170 g unsalted butter, diced

  • sea salt

  • freshly ground black pepper