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Broccoli is one of those versatile vegetables that is excellent on a veggie tray, used in salads, or lightly steamed.  A very low calorie vegetable, it contains just 34 calories per 100 grams.  Broccoli is high in vitamins A, C, calcium, potassium, and iron.  It is rich in dietary fiber, and is also a rich source of vitamin K and the B-complex group of vitamins.
Here are some fun facts you may not know about broccoli:
Broccoli originated in Italy, and has been eaten there since the time of the ancient Romans in the 6th century BC.
The name “broccoli” is derived from the Italian word “broccolo” meaning the flowering top of a cabbage.
90% of our nation’s broccoli is produced in California.
To store broccoli, place in a plastic zip-lock bag, removing as much air as possible from the bag.  Store in the hydrator drawer of the refrigerator. It’s best to use it within a few days.  When ready to use, soak head upside down in cold water.  Slice off the lowest part of the stem if it is woody or tough.  The florets can then be chopped and separated, ready to use in your salads or as a dipping vegetable.  Lightly steaming them (5-7 minutes) will brighten the color and increase digestibility.  To retain the most nutrients, avoid overcooking.  Serve with butter and sprinkle parmesan cheese on top.


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