A Love Letter to Broccoli: Where Is the Respect?

Jack Barrett
by Jack Barrett
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A Love Letter to Broccoli: Where Is the Respect?

“I didn’t forget about the vegetable that made me the man I am today.”

Get that acai smoothie out of my face.

I don’t want to hear about how you put avocado on everything. Or how you love roasted Brussels sprouts. Oh, yeah? If you love them so much, why don’t you marry them?

Boom. You’re roasted.

A green juice cleanse? Quinoa bowls? Wheatgrass? Chia seeds? What’s going on here? Is anybody listening to me anymore?

The other day I heard somebody say they ate a pizza made out of cauliflower… Even you, pizza?

Do not — I repeat do not — get me started on kale.

Since when did we become the generation known for pop-culture vegetable consumption? We hop from health-food trend to health-food trend faster than chokers became stylish. (Are men allowed to wear those yet? Asking for a friend.) And it’s making us look like a bunch of shallow, superficial star-chasers who’ve forgotten our roots (that’s a good, old-fashioned vegetable pun for you).

But not me. I didn’t forget about the vegetable that made me the man I am today. The vegetable I reluctantly ate at my mom’s orders. The vegetable my father reluctantly ate at his mom’s orders before me. And that my father’s father reluctantly ate at his mom’s orders before him.

A vegetable that knows what it means to be tough. That walked barefoot in the snow to school every day, uphill both ways, that survived both presidential slander and Supreme Court derision.

That’s right. I’m talking about broccoli. No nonsense. Fundamentally sound. The fullback of vegetables.

Broccoli  — the original superfood! Loaded with fiber to help your digestive system, packed with calcium to control your blood pressure and build strong bones.

Broccoli — the budget balancer! Despite everything it does for you, all year round it remains one of the most affordable vegetables.

Broccoli — the humble helper! Containing not one, not two, but three key antioxidants that can lower the risk of chronic inflammation. Whose glucosinolates (OK, I’m doing a lot of research now) play a vital role in activating detox activity in cells, heroically expelling toxic substances from the body.

“That’s right. I’m talking about broccoli. No nonsense. Fundamentally sound. The fullback of vegetables.”

In fact, considerable research has shown that the combination of reducing inflammation and detoxification is highly likely to reduce our risk of cancer. That’s right! Broccoli literally can cure… OK, I won’t go there, but you get the point that it’s really good for you.

But today, broccoli is being ignored by the old guard and attention-hungry millennials alike.  Maybe because it doesn’t ask for the credit. It’s not desperate for your approval.

Broccoli won’t and shouldn’t compromise what it is just so it can get its picture taken next to kale on the cover of Veg Weekly. It won’t hop into bed with sautéed bacon bits for a little airtime. And it certainly doesn’t need to debase itself in some overpriced smoothie to get your attention.

Broccoli doesn’t want your attention, but it deserves your attention.

“Broccoli won’t and shouldn’t compromise what it is just so it can get its picture taken next to kale on the cover of Veg Weekly.”

So, if even after all that you want to run off with that flavor of the week you met in the produce aisle at Whole Foods, go ahead. I won’t be jealous.

I’ll be here, standing by my man, broccoli, who drives his Chevy pickup to the quarry every day.

And when that Beetroot-Infused Cucumber Immune Booster breaks your heart, broccoli will still be here waiting for you, too.

About the Author

Jack Barrett
Jack Barrett

Jack Barrett likes #sports, writing, and watching Arrested Development. He lives in New York City.


16 responses to “A Love Letter to Broccoli: Where Is the Respect?”

  1. Avatar Swingshift Worker says:

    What’s wrong w/kale? LOL!!!!

    FWIW, I love ALL eating and cooking w/all of the cruciferous vegetables. Broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, cabbage and kale are my favorites.

  2. Avatar Gretchen D says:

    Best broccoli article I’ve ever read.

  3. Avatar Sarah LaCroix says:

    I eat an unholy amount of broccoli because that sh*t’s delicious. And cheap. #teambroccoli

  4. Avatar Unnie says:

    Haha LOVE this!!! This made me laugh and crave broccoli, thank you sir! xx

  5. Avatar Paula Schlotterbeck says:

    Great article- made me smile =) #teambroccoli

  6. Avatar Vectorize says:

    Wonder what Jack would think of broccoli rice…

  7. High five, I feel the same.

    Charmaine Ng
    Architecture & Lifestyle Blog

  8. Avatar Gaby says:

    Huy !!yep today all of youl oves brocoli hahaha..

  9. Avatar Lea says:

    This read like you were trying to hit the word count on a middle school essay. But fuck it, broccoli is the shiz.

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  10. Avatar Anthony says:

    I don’t eat vegetables,
    but when I do… I eat BROCCOLI!!!

  11. Avatar Cleange1 says:

    Lol… Loved this book read. Awesome way to animate broccoli in the process of getting your point across… You have me looking for other articles written by you… Gosh… They don’t even have a broccoli emoji…. Lol

  12. Avatar Joan Magee says:

    Cover plate with Broccoli. Microwave 2-3 minutes. Cover with Good Freshly Grated Parmesan. Another 15 seconds in micro. Dinner is served.

  13. Avatar nomovies4me says:

    Try it sautéed with lemon and fresh garlic! Awesome

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