Flavourful little gems, these baked broccoli bites make great appetizers.
Broccoli combined with garlic, three cheeses and a range of spices rolled into balls the perfect size to pop into your mouth. Guests will love these appetizers bursting with flavour and baked into golden spheres just begging to be dipped into the accompanying yogurt, garlic, and lemon sauce.
By boiling the broccoli until it becomes very tender it is easily blended into a dough and baked. The broccoli can be either fresh or frozen. But if it's frozen give it a little time to thaw and adjust the boiling time as thawed broccoli will already be somewhat tender thanks to the freezing process. I have even used leftover broccoli to make a smaller batch ensuring no veggies go to waste.
These broccoli bites can be made and frozen even after baking. Just thaw and bake again for 5 to 10 minutes at 325°F / 165°C to ensure they are warmed through.
These can be made gluten-free by either using gluten-free breadcrumbs or cornmeal, oat flour, or finely crushed nuts.
(Makes 4 servings)
1 large head broccoli, chopped
1 cup Panko breadcrumbs
2 large eggs
1/4 cup gruyere cheese, shredded
1/4 cup white cheddar cheese, shredded
1/4 cup asiago cheese, shredded
1/4 cup fresh parsley, minced
1/4 cup sweet onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, divided
1/8 teaspoon ground black pepper
2 tablespoons butter, melted
1 cup plain fat free Greek yogurt, pressed
2 cloves garlic, minced
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
juice of 1/2 small lemon
zest of 1/2 small lemon
1/2 teaspoon dried coriander
1/2 teaspoon dried tarragon
1/4 teaspoon sea salt
1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
In a large pot over medium-high heat, add the chopped broccoli, cover with water, and sprinkle with 1/4 teaspoon sea salt. Bring to a boil and allow to continue boiling until the broccoli is very soft (about 15 to 20 minutes). Drain well and set aside.
Preheat oven to 400°F / 200°C and prepare a mini muffin baking sheet, silicone or lined with mini muffin cups. Set aside.
Using a food processor, add the boiled broccoli and pulse once or twice before adding the breadcrumbs, eggs, three cheeses, fresh parsley, onion, garlic, the remaining 1/4 teaspoon sea salt, and ground black pepper. Pulse the food processor until all the ingredients are well combined.
Using a medium cookie scoop, scoop out balls of the broccoli mixture and transfer them to the mini muffin baking sheet. Brush the tops of each broccoli bite with a little melted butter then bake for 25 to 30 minutes or until the tops are golden brown.
While the broccoli bites bake, prepare the dip. In a small food processor, or bullet blender, add the yogurt, garlic, extra-virgin olive oil, lemon juice, lemon zest, herbs, and spices. Blend until well combined and smooth. Transfer into an airtight container and refrigerate until the broccoli bites are ready.
Remove the broccoli bites from the oven and let cool for about 10 minutes before removing from the baking sheet and transferring to a serving plate. Serve while warm with the yogurt dip on the side.
Nutritional Information Per Serving:
total calories = 348 | total fat = 17.29g | saturated fat = 7.16g | cholesterol = 122mg | sodium = 923.5mg | net carbohydrates = 30.73g | dietary fibre = 5.66g | sugars = 7.89g | protein = 18.95g