I saved these images in a folder on my computer named "broccoli con burro chiarificato e aglio arrostito in padella." It was in a parent folder with other folders named simple things like "picatta," "alfredo" and "marinara." Italian is a gorgeous language in that it can use elegant syllables to describe things that tug at our heart strings like "pizza" that makes all of us happy children inside, and, if that fails, just string together 230 syllables that are almost entirely vowels and rattle them off at roughly lightspeed, and that also is beautiful too I guess?

We are like most people in that when making a meal, usually the focus is on a protein, and the vegetables are treated like a typical "side-dish." But this is one where it looks like the star when you see the stove.

Yes, you need all three of these going at once.

Luckily, the recipe itself is really easy.

And totally worth it. Very few things as delicious as garlic that has nearly candied itself in olive oil with a touch of nuttiness from the brown butter to make broccoli stand up and say "no, I should be the star of the plate!"

The minced garlic after a long sauté in extra-virgin olive oil. Let it go until it's almost candied.
Drain the oil and discard, then dump the garlic back into the bowl.
Looking for that perfect clarity and the curdled fats; want the butter beneath to just start to caramelize.
Steam the broccoli for only five to six minutes or so over a raging steam. No one likes soggy veggies unless they are a filthy communist. And they shouldn't be eating anyway, because, well, no food.
My five-year-old's ideal meal is 3-2-1 ribs and this broccoli.
My five year old asks for this by name. Yes. Five year old. Who grew up with his mom eating chicken nuggets and mac and cheese, now asks for "broccoli with garlic butter."


  • 12 tbsp of butter
  • 2-3 large heads of broccoli (approximately 1 lb)
  • ~2 oz extra virgin olive oil
  • ~3 tbsp minced or chopped garlic

Pretty simple. You'll need some simple equipment most people have too.

  • Large stockpot with steam insert and lid
  • Medium sized soup bowl
  • Wire-mesh strainer with very small holes
  • Two omelet pans
  • Wooden spoon
  • Kitchen scissors


  1. Place butter in omelet pan and apply medium heat to melt and clarify.
  2. Trim broccoli florets off of stems and place, tops up, in steamer insert left out of the pot.
  3. Pour olive oil into the other omelet pan (may need more or less; looking for approximately ⅛" to ¼" depth in pan).
  4. Add the garlic to the olive oil and apply medium-low heat.
  5. Fill large stock pot 50% full with water, turn on high heat, and apply lid.
  6. Keep watch on things; looking for clarified butter and slightly browned/crisped garlic pieces. When garlic begins to brown, lower the heat to "keep warm."
  7. Likewise, when butter is clear, apply higher heat to brown butter.
  8. When butter is nearly browned, put the broccoli steamer insert into the pot (which should be at a rolling boil.)
  9. Steam the broccoli for approximately 5-6 minutes.
  10. When the butter is beginning to brown, and broccoli is around the 2 minutes remaining mark, drain the olive oil through the filter into the bowl (or the sink, or the trash). Discard the oil.
  11. Scrape the garlic into the bowl, and leave it there.
  12. When the butter is perfectly browned pour it through the filter onto the garlic. The filter should retain the larger white protein chunks while the clarified brown butter should drizzle through into the garlic. Stir lightly together with the spoon to prevent the sugars in the garlic from solidifying.
  13. Remove broccoli from heat and plate.
  14. Pour the garlic/butter over the broccoli, garlic chunks and all.
  15. Enjoy.