I just got back from a business trip to Norman, Oklahoma (of all places) and one of the things I missed most was roasted vegetables. I am being serious. Going in, everyone told me the best part of the whole hotel-training center experience was the food. Not so. It was just okay. It was plentiful. It was all-you-can-eat. Now, don’t get me wrong, I took full advantage and did, in fact, eat all I could. Its just that I like to cook what I think of as restaurant-quality. This food was diner-quality. And the vegetables, although pretty good for the most part, seemed to be mainly frozen and/or boiled.
Also, even though frozen is good quality and nutrient-rich, I still like the crisp snap and superior flavor of fresh and local vegetables. Steaming and stir-frying are also good and flavorful options. But for ease and taste, nothing beats roasting. Vegetables can be roasted alongside meats, or on their own. I like to roast lots of cauliflower. It is my weakness. This is a general recipe. Cooking time will be dependent upon the size of your vegetables, and whether you like them lightly browned or fully caramelized. I like both ways. I mix them into brown rice (you can chop them after roasting if you like), as is room temperature, or as a topping for pizza.
- Red onions in thin wedges
- Cauliflower florets
- Broccoli florets
- Green beans, trimmed
- Grape tomatoes
- Fennel, trimmed and thinly sliced
- Asparagus, trimmed
- bell peppers, seeded, cored, and sliced thin
- Potatoes, thin wedges or slices
- Carrots, cut thin
- Sweet potatoes, thin wedges or slices
- Parsnips, cut thin
- Any squash, cubed or thinly sliced
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Cut vegetables of your choice into bite-sized pieces. Make about a cup per person.
Toss in a large bowl with a little bit of olive oil.
Spread out, in a single layer, on a baking sheet. Season with a little salt and freshly ground black pepper.
Roast to desired browness, about 16 minutes.
Store, covered in the refrigerator, up to about 3 days.
Other spices can be used to jazz this up, but I find salt and pepper is just fine.