Thursday, March 20, 2014

Easy Roasted Veggies: Sexy Vegetarian Thursday


Hello, lovelies!

 As spring approaches (seriously, is it here already?), I'd like to share a recipe I use through the fall, winter, and spring months on nights when it's really pleasant (or downright necessary) to have the oven on. One of the easiest ways to get your partner, family, or friends to eat vegetables is to roast them. Believe me, it sounds more complicated than it actually is. Essentially, roasting is baking the veggies with olive oil on a baking sheet. That's it. I love simple cooking, don't you? Roasting brings out the veggies' flavors, gives them a beautiful texture, and might make you like a veg you thought you hated. Roasted vegetables take about 30 minutes to make and compliment almost any main dish you serve in the colder months.

Two of my favorites vegetables to roast are Brussels sprouts and carrots.

Lots of people think they hate Brussels sprouts, but haven't actually had them in years. I am a prime example of this population: my dad used to boil frozen sprouts. Oh the horror! Please, for the love of the sprout, don't do this. I didn't eat them again for well over ten years until I had dinner at a friend's house in 2012 and he cooked them like this. You really need fresh Brussels sprouts to do them any sort of justice. I've even come to love raw Brussels sprouts, but they have a very intense spicy flavor.


Roasted Brussels sprouts, however, lose that harsh bite and develop a toasted flavor. The texture of roasted sprouts is just divine. They're softened, chewy, and crispy all at once. Roasted sprouts are delicious on their own, but you can create a special dish by topping them with crumbled bacon and blue cheese, or balsamic vinegar and chopped pistachios. You just might convert to a Brussels sprout lover!

Roasted Brussels Sprouts
Servings: 4-6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients
1 pound fresh Brussels sprouts
*If you buy the sprouts still on the stem, you'll need to cut them off the stem before following the directions.
*If you need to clean the sprouts, do so ahead of time so they will be dry before roasting.
*You can buy sprouts that are already cleaned, so you can jump to the directions.

Directions
1. Prepare sprouts by cutting the hard end off each sprout. Then cut each sprout in half lengthwise or "hot dog" style.
2. Place cut sprouts in one layer on a baking sheet.
3. Drizzle sprouts liberally with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
4. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
5. Flip sprouts with spatula, then roast for another 10 minutes.
6. Serve immediately.

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I suspect that far more people like carrots over Brussels sprouts, but carrots can be difficult to prepare in a desirable fashion. I'd rather eat a raw carrot than a boiled carrot. Who's with me?


If you've never had roasted carrots, you have to try them. Roasting carrots brings out their natural sweetness and gives them a perfect texture. There's really nothing worse than mushy carrots, right? Not to worry because these carrots are perfectly cooked.

Roasted Carrots
Servings: 4-6
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

Ingredients
 1 pound fresh carrots

Directions
1. Prepare carrots by cutting both ends off each carrot. Use peeler to remove outer layer from carrots. Then, cut each carrot into the size you desire--I aim for a thick matchstick size. Try to make the pieces roughly the same size so they roast evenly.
2. Place cut carrots in one layer on a baking sheet.
3. Drizzle carrots liberally with olive oil, and sprinkle with salt and pepper.
4. Bake uncovered at 350 degrees for 15 minutes.
5. Flip carrots with spatula, then roast for another 10 minutes.
6. Serve immediately.

I hope you find these recipes simple and delicious. Enjoy!

Much love,
Danni

Check out these parties where I shared this post!
Homemade Mondays @ Frugal By Choice
Marvelous Mondays @ This Gal Cooks 
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