Thursday, December 1, 2011

Roasted Vegetables

For years and years I ate boring steamed vegetables. I can't believe now that I ever even enjoyed them that way. These days, I grill them, stir-fry them, or  my favorite  roast them. It started with asparagus. It's been many years now, but the first time I roasted the asparagus, I knew I could never go back to boiled or steamed. Then it was broccoli. I don't think I've ever shared my roasted broccoli recipe here (I just want to keep that one for myself), but it's good stuff. People who think they don't like green vegetables love this broccoli. Someone once told me it tasted like steak (in a good way, of course)!

My new favorite recipe for roasted vegetables is super simple. I'm not even sure why it's so good as there's not much to it. Maybe because the vegetables can just roast and caramelize a bit with very little fuss, and that allows their wonderful flavors to come out all on their own. I found the original recipe from Gourmet magazine via Epicurious on my iPhone. It was for Brussels sprouts. Now, if you don't like Brussels sprouts, it's probably because you've never had them roasted. Am I right? Believe me, you've got to try them. Anyway, the Brussels sprouts were great, but I've used the same recipe for carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, and I bet it makes great beets and other vegetables too.

Roasted Vegetables with Caraway Seeds  PRINTABLE RECIPE

About 1-1/2 lbs of firm vegetables (any one or any combination): Brussels sprouts - trimmed & halved, Carrots - peeled & sliced to 1/4" thick, Broccoli - small flowerettes, Cauliflower - small flowerettes, Beets - peeled & sliced to 1/4" thick
1/4 cup extra virgin olive oil
1 tsp caraway seeds
sea salt & freshly ground black pepper

1. Preheat oven to 450°

2. In a large bowl, toss vegetables with olive oil, about 1/2 teaspoon salt, and a few grinds of pepper. Transfer to a large rimmed baking sheet and arrange in a single layer.

3. Roast on center rack of oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven, sprinkle with caraway seeds, and toss. Arrange again in a single layer and roast for about 10 minutes more, until vegetables are crisp-tender and browned in spots. 

That's it. Simple, right? Enjoy! 

By the way, I have to say thank you to Mike Caldwell  wherever you are these days  for helping me to learn to spell vegetable way back in 5th or 6th grade:  VE - GE - TABLE.  I still sound it out in my head that way every time I write (or type) the word. Thanks!


  1. Thanks for this blog. I've been roasting vegetables for the last year or so, inspired by Mark Bittman and some of his recipes. I never thought I'd rave about brussel sprouts, but Bittman's recipe for slicing them in half, browing them and then roasting them with a little lemon juice and a variety of spices on them is great, great, great! I also sprinkle a little freshly ground parm on them at the last minute or two.

  2. Try sliced leeks -- they caramelise very delightfully. Also drizzle with Hollandaise before serving.