Roasting vegetables is an alternative to steaming and provides you with a different taste and texture than you might be used to. Whether you are headed into spring or fall: roasted vegetables are a great staple to have on hand for a warming dinner, an easy way to batch cook a good amount of nutritious vegetables to include in lunches, soups or even a quick egg scramble in the morning. The combinations are endless and come together as soon as you take a trip to a farmer’s market to see what’s fresh and available.
You may be asking, “What veggies should I roast?” That my friend is completely up to you. What are your seasonal favorites?
Some basics and always a crowd pleaser are sweet potatoes, butternut squash, pumpkin with onion and garlic. Root vegetables celeriac, parsnips, carrots, beetroot are also tasty and add sweetness. Don’t shy away from the cruciferous varieties like broccoli, romanesco, or cauliflower who all add their own richness to a roasted medley and the hated/loved Brussels sprouts (are you a hater or lover?) Fennel and leeks also make tasty additions. But as I’ve said anything goes – leafy greens are something you can add once you’ve taken the roasted veggies out of the oven or add them at the very end of the roasting time. You can even roast bok choy (delicious!). Veggies like zucchini and summer squash are also quick roasting and would benefit from being added in at the end of the roasting time (the last 15-20 minutes). The caramelization that occurs (charred tips) make roasted veggies so delicious.
As each batch will most likely be different the actual recipe is up to you. Aim for 600-800g of mixed veggies.
Some tips for roasting:
- First, choose a roasting dish that works for you. Options are a glass pyrex dish, ceramic/stoneware roasting pan, a sheet pan, or cast iron pan.
- To prevent sticking and get the vegetables to have a crispy texture, add 1 TBS of high heat cooking oil for every 600g of vegetable. (Coconut oil and Ghee are good choices to add here.)
- Ensure your oven is hot enough (375-400F or 190-200C)
- It’s best not to overcrowd your pan(s) with veggies. Try to make sure that there is only one layer in the pan. You can always roast more than one pan or set two different pans next to each other in the oven.
- The smaller you chop your vegetables the quicker they will be done
- Flip or stir your vegetables once, or better yet, twice during cooking. This will ensure that all veggies get evenly cooked.
- You can add your favorite dried herb during the roasting if desired.
- An even sprinkle of salt and freshly ground paper also help bring out flavors.
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