My ulcerative colitis diagnosis five years ago put a fear filter over my view of food. I approached meals tentatively, afraid that my plate held hours of stomach cramps. More often than not, the unenjoyed calories brought more inflammation than nourishment to my body. Now, I see my food as medicine, one of the most important components of my healing journey.
This broccoli brought a nostalgic memory of ten-year-old Lauren–the Lauren who just saw food as food.
I remember sitting cross-legged on my bed, one hand holding Little Women, and my other hand inside a bag of Pirate’s Booty. I munched away with carefree abandon, fingers wreathed in a powdery, salty coating. An hour later, I had finished the book as well as the entire bag of Booty. I thought, “so that is what it is like to eat the whole bag.” No guilt, no fear… just a bit of wide-eyed amazement at the capacity of my own stomach. And then I went to soccer practice, worked up my appetite again, and enjoyed a hearty dinner. Food was just food.
So how does a sentimental bag of potato puffs relate to broccoli? Today, I ate the contents of a whole bag of broccoli while reading my psychology textbook. And, because I knew it was nourishing and safe for my digestive tract, it was just food. Pure and simple.
Using frozen broccoli florets takes virtually all the preparation time out of roasted broccoli, without sacrificing texture or flavor. Old Bay adds a slightly spicy, earthy kick to these addictive veggies.
Spiced Roasted Broccoli (From the Freezer!)
1 bag frozen broccoli florets
1 tsp. Old Bay Seasoning
1/2 tsp. sea salt
2-3 Tbs. olive oil
Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper. Divide the broccoli between the two sheets and toss with the Old Bay, salt, and olive oil. Roast for 15 minutes, then flip the florets over. Roast for anther 15 minutes, until golden brown in spots and tender.
Makes about 1 1/2 cups, or 3-4 servings.