In a small bowl, stir vinegar, shallot and salt together then allow it to sit for 10 minutes—allowing the shallot to soak in the vinegar will mellow the harsh flavor of the shallot. After 10 minutes, whisk in the oil and chopped parsley. Set the vinaigrette aside until the salad ingredients have been prepared.
Rinse the broccoli under cool water and remove as much water as possible by blotting with a paper towel. Remove the florets from the head of broccoli then cut them into small pieces and place in a medium-sized mixing bowl and set aside.
Next peel the tough outer skin of the broccoli stems using a vegetable peeler or paring knife. Slice the stems thinly then chop into bite-sized pieces. Add the stem pieces in with the florets—you should have about 5–6 cups of finely chopped broccoli.
Add the toasted sunflower seeds and dried cranberries in with the broccoli, then pour the vinaigrette over the mixture. Toss to coat evenly. Add Parmesan cheese, black pepper to taste and toss to combine. Enjoy!
One Last Thing
I don’t love mayo, so I’m wild about this recipe because the dressing is just a simple red wine vinegar and olive oil—delish!