Farmers markets and home gardens are bursting with fresh produce. Right now, my garden is popping. One of my favorite ways to prepare fresh veggies is to roast them with a little olive oil. They can be your meal's main event, a side dish or you can add them to other dishes, such as soups, sandwiches and salads. The key to making them taste like candy is to refrain from cooking them too fast. If you want them crispy, don't crank the heat, just leave them in the oven a little longer. My friends call this recipe, "Vivi's veggies."
The combo of olive oil and vegetables adds up to a very healthy feast. The produce is low calorie and packed with fiber, nutrients and polyphenols.. The olive oil, while high in calories, also contains polyphenols. A study in the Journal of Molecular Sciences shows that polyphenols are substances that help reduce your risk of cardiovascular diseases, neurogenerative diseases and some cancers.
You can roast any combo of vegetables you want. For this round, I'll go for broccoli, carrots, onions, beans and eggplant, plus some potatoes that I purchased at a farmers market. Because vegetables vary in density and texture, they cook at different rates. I put harder produce, such as carrots or kohlrabi in the oven first. Then when they are part way done, I add the softer vegetables, such as broccoli.
Fresh, simple and delicious!
Ingredients: vegetables of choice. For example:
Onions, washed and quartered
Broccoli, washed and cut into florets
Potatoes, washed and chopped into cubes of varying size
Green beans, washed and trimmed
Eggplant, washed and sliced
Carrots, washed and cut or left whole (if small enough)
Olive oil for marinating
Salt and pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 385 F. Prepare vegetables by washing and chopping to desired size. Grab a bowl big enough to hold the potatoes. Place them in the bowl and pour in enough olive oil to generously coat the potatoes. Pour out of the bowl onto a parchment-lined cookie sheet. Repeat the process with each of the other types of vegetables. You can place more than one type of vegetable on the same cookie sheet, as long as they need the same amount of cooking time. Put the potatoes in first. Roasting time will vary, depending on the size of the pieces, but count on approximately 30 - 35 minutes. Then after 10 minutes, add the other vegetables except for the broccoli. I find that homegrown broccoli is very tender and only takes about 15 minutes.
When the vegetables are done, put them in a platter. Season with salt and pepper to tastes and enjoy!
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