Broccoli with blue cheese and walnut sauce, dogs vs boars, and wedding anniversaries

Broccoli with blue cheese and walnut sauce

There is a particularly grumpy, confirmed bachelor wild boar that lives in the woods not far from us. I think that he and Hugo are very alike and, as such, seem to annoy each other unreasonably. Whenever we go through the woods, either on foot or horseback, Hugo uproots the poor chap, who really wishes us no harm. I haven’t seen the boar recently; I think he’s probably in the market for a new home, with quieter, less disruptive neighbours.

It was our 20th wedding anniversary yesterday, and we went to an excellent restaurant in the grounds of a Bordelaise wine château for dinner. Léo graced us with his presence and, very sweetly and quite out of the blue, announced that now, after over 18 years’ experience, he had become immune to being embarrassed by us in public. I’m not sure exactly how we used to embarrass him, although when I look at the photos he took last night, I begin to understand. I always look a bit ‘One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest’ in photos. Some people might say the camera never lies; I maintain it’s mean and unforgiving where I’m concerned.

Luc, who is not a lover of broccoli (what is it with men and broccoli? I don’t know a single male broccoli-eater!) approved this sauce, saying it made the broccoli ‘almost edible’. Not only does this sauce encourage men to eat broccoli almost whinge-free, it also packs a punch health-wise.

Broccoli is packed with nutrients to support the liver and aid detoxification. It has high levels of isothiocyanates, indoles and dithiolethiones, which help protect the body from cancer by regulating the way the cells respond to environmental elements. Salads and green vegetables are always best when combined with oil or fat to help absorption of the nutrients.

Walnuts are also full of vitamins and minerals, and are an especially rich source of Omega 3. They are also a rich source of antioxidants and help decrease inflammation. Consuming walnuts can enrich the gut microbiome, increasing good bacteria.

Recipe for broccoli with blue cheese and walnut sauce (serves 2)

  • 1 broccoli, cut into medium-size florets
  • 25g butter or 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 heaped tablespoon corn flour
  • sea salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon of paprika
  • 1 teaspoon mustard
  • 1 clove of garlic, crushed
  • 50ml plain yoghurt
  • 50ml chicken or vegetable stock
  • 50g roquefort, crumbled (you could use any blue cheese)
  • 10 walnuts, shelled and crushed
  • Chopped chives to garnish

Cook the brocolli ‘al dente’ in salted boiling water for about 10 minutes. Better still, steam cook it. While the brocolli is cooking make the sauce. Place the corn flour and butter or olive oil in a saucepan over a gentle heat, and combine well to form a thick paste. Add the seasoning, mustard, garlic, yoghurt and stock and stir continously until the mixture thickens. Add the blue cheese and heat and stir until it melts. Finally add the crushed walnuts, mixing well. Pour over the brocolli, sprinkle the chives over the top and serve!


  • kristenann

    Congratulations on your anniversary! You two make a lovely couple 😍. My dad and oldest son love broccoli so male broccoli eaters do exist! My son’s favorite meal when he was about 6 or 7 was broccoli and tofu, both cut into bitesize pieces and steamed together for a short amount of time, then wrapped in a spelt tortilla with garlic sauce. It really is a great combo~ one of those things that is better than it sounds.

    • The Healthy Epicurean

      That’s amazing, and certainly rare from what I can see. I bet there are too many children who’s favourite meal is tofu and broccoli – he must have very advanced tastebuds! I think it sounds delicious…

  • KJ

    Unlike many, I do like broccoli, preferably with Hollandaise, or butter. However, we do have an old and graceful walnut tree not fifteen feet from my desk, so we have an abundance of walnuts, and if I can drape the vegs with a sauce, M will eat them – and he likes walnuts, as do I. This is one I will try, without the garlic, though. As for the camera issue, my experience of that traitorous bit of kit has been one where it seems less inclined to compliment my being, as I mature. In your regard, I do like the image of you and Luc on the walkway. Kudos to the lad for catching it. By the way, was it china, or platinum?

      • KJ

        I love blue cheese! The FODMAP list does not say ‘no’ to blue cheese, and I do have it a few times each year. My mainstay is cheddar, and I keep stocked up on that essential, though I sometimes switch over to goat cheese, with herbs. M just looked over my shoulder and he seems ready to try this recipe. That’s a good sign. RE the older L – no worries. There will be a surprise in the mail to you on Monday at the latest, which may help fill the gap in some small way.

        • The Healthy Epicurean

          Oh great! I look forward it! L is good with enormous presents (horses/cars) but absolutely has no idea about smaller scale things🤣🤣 I guess I thought hou couldn’t eat blue cheese as it’s quite high in histamine.

          • KJ

            I may have avoided any issues by taking my high-powered, fourth-generation antihistamines before imbibing, as it was customary for me to have a bit of wine with this treat. Any negatives I would have attributed to the wine. I will make sure to take my med before having another sit down with that treat.

  • Allison

    Hi Fiona, such lovely photos. Belated Anniversary wishes to you! Looks like you had an amazing celebration in a lovely setting and with your son too, how nice! The recipe sounds great, I love walnuts bar the odd bitter one (to be avoided!). I like broccoli , I think my stomach finds it a challenge though, let’s say charcoal tabs are required after consuming.
    Thank you for your email, will be in touch

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