October 2, 2008
Now that October is here and we're heading into a more autumnal produce season, one of the first dishes I think of is roasted vegetables.
While you might initially be reminded of Thanksgiving or Christmas and a traditional plate of roast yams, try to go beyond that. You can literally roast just about any veg, with different herbs & spices, oils and marinades or just as is!
Make too much on purpose so that you can enjoy them the next day as well; like a soup or a stew, they're often better the next day!
Here are some of my personal favorites:
-Roasted Eggplant. Just eggplant. With nothing! Slice into pieces about 1/4" thick and place on a rack under a broiler. Turn the slices every 5' or so until they're nicely browned and soft. With next to zero calories, they're surprisingly delicious as they are, or, throw them in the food processor with some lemon, tahini & garlic and you've got your own, home-made Baba Ganouj (quite similar to hummus, but without the garbanzos, for those of us who don't eat legumes!). Alternatively, you can intentionally leave them in the oven longer (but keep a close eye) and literally dehydrate them; they'll turn into a crisp, VERY HEALTHY cracker alternative!
-Roasted Squash. Cut up some zucchini, yellow squash, Portabello Mushrooms & acorn squash into cubes. Throw in some cut bell peppers. Toss in a high-quality, cold-pressed olive oil & throw in some thyme & white peppercorns. Cook in a preheated 425 degree oven for about 45 minutes, stirring every 10 minutes or so to ensure even cooking.
-Getting ready for a long run or a nice hike the next day? My husband and I have the following roast potato dish almost every Friday to get ready for our long ride Saturdays:
Throw some fingerling potatoes into a pot of boiling water and let them cook for 10 minutes. Take them out, run them under cold water to shock them and then place in a glass or ceramic baking dish. Toss in some olive oil, peppercorns, fresh rosemary and some kosher salt (gotta keep on top of your sodium for the big workout tomorrow!:) Cook in a preheated 425 degree oven for 15 minutes- perfect! The leftovers will also come in handy the next day when you get back from your ride/hike/run or whatever activity you're up to!
These are but a few of the things you can do with minimal time and effort- as I always say- play around and make up some of your own favorites!