Broccoli is an edible green plant from the cabbage family. It is characterized by fleshy green flower heads arranged in a tree-like fashion on branches sprouting from a thick, edible stalk. There are three commonly grown varieties of broccoli, Calabrese Broccoli, Sprouting broccoli and Purple cauliflower. Broccoli is said to be originated in Italy, where it was developed from wild cabbage. Commercial cultivation of broccoli in the United States can be traced to the D'Arrigo brothers, Stephano and Andrea, immigrants from Messina, Italy, whose company made some tentative plantings in San Jose, California in 1922. China and India stand among the two major producers of broccoli in the World followed by the U.S. It is said to pack the most nutritional punch of any vegetable.
When buying broccoli, try to choose pieces that are tight and firm to the touch and dark green in color. Avoid pieces that are limp or turning yellow.
Broccoli is a good source of vitamin K, which may interfere with blood-thinning drugs such as warfarin (Coumadin). (3)
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