Balsamic Roasted Garlic VeggiesPosted: April 24, 2012 Filed under: Sides, Vegan, Vegetarian, Veggies | Tags: balsamic roasted veggies, balsamic vinegar, broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, garlic, onions, peppers, potatoes, roasted garlic, roasted vegetables, roasted veggies, squash, zucchini 3 Comments
“I don’t like asparagus. I don’t like broccoli. I don’t like onions. I don’t like garlic. I don’t like vegetables. Well, I do like corn … and potatoes. I like potatoes.”
This was my husband when we first got married.
I don’t remember cooking much in our first year of marriage. In fact, I have no idea what we ate. I hardly have a single memory in that tiny galley kitchen. Between Jared’s aversion to all things that made food delicious to me and the hideous marbled yellow laminate counter tops with cracks on the corners, I must have felt less than inspired.
When we moved to a new town house with a bright white kitchen near Galveston, I suddenly found myself looking for excuses to be in the kitchen. I started shopping at Farmer’s Markets and reading food blogs and became determined to get Jared to love veggies. Little by little, I found ways to prepare certain vegetables in a way he would eat them. He’ll eat onions if they are caramelized or chopped fine and sauteed in a dish. He’ll eat his peas in a split pea soup. And I can get him to eat almost anything wrapped in a tortilla and dipped in salsa. Thank goodness, because in a crazy turn of events, before we moved out of that town home a year later, we had become full on vegans.
The preparation that finally got Jared raving and begging for veggies was roasting them. If it’s coated with a little evoo and seasoning and crisped up to perfection (to him that includes a few burnt bits on the pan), he’s a happy husband and a happy veggie eater!
This method works wonderfully with asparagus, any root vegetables, broccoli and cauliflower, onions, even chickpeas. Try it with a vegetable you think you don’t like and see if it changes your thoughts on it.
Balsamic Roasted Garlic Veggies
(Note: The vegetable list is just a guideline. Use whatever you have in your refrigerator or is on sale at the market. The seasoning ingredients listed are for about 4 cups of vegetables.)
Potatoes, chopped (small, soft-skinned work great, but Idaho & sweet potatoes are wonderful too)
Onions, quartered (leave one end in tact so they don’t get burnt)
Peppers (bell peppers, sweet tri colored peppers, poblanos) (seeded & quartered)
Broccoli (cut into “trees”)
Cauliflower (cut into “trees”)
Zucchini (chopped into large chunks or long ribbons)
Squash (chopped into large chunks or long ribbons)
2 T (maybe more) Extra Virgin Olive Oil
1 T. Balsamic Vinegar
2 t. Salt
2 t. Pepper
1 T. Italian Seasoning Blend
A full head of garlic
Preheat oven to 400. Spray large cookie sheet with nonstick spray.
Put all the veggies except the garlic in a large mixing bowl, and drizzle 2 tbs of olive oil over the veggies. Toss until all of the veggies are lightly coated, adding more olive oil if needed. Don’t drench them or you’re veggies won’t get crisp. (The amount of olive oil varies because some veggies soak up more, like cauliflower, and others hardly absorb any, like peppers.)
Add balsamic vinegar, salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning, and toss again. Pour veggies onto the cookie sheet and spread around. If they are piled on top of each other, use a second pan.
Take the garlic, remove the lose skin, and chop the top of the head off the garlic so the inside of each clove is exposed. Place the bulb on a piece of foil and drizzle the top of the bulb with olive oil. Wrap the foil around the clove. Add the foil wrapped garlic onto the pan of veggies (sitting upright). Check this tutorial out if you need a visual.
Bake the veggies and garlic for approximately 40 minutes. The potatoes and carrots take the longest to cook, so cook until they are soft in the middle and crispy on the outside.
Remove the garlic from the foil and allow to cool for a few minutes. Carefully either squeeze the garlic out (like toothpaste), or use a fork to remove each clove. Toss in with the roasted veggies. The garlic is delicious and really elevates roasted veggies! Your friends will most definitely track you down for the recipe. Trust me.
This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title: Balsamic Roasted Garlic Veggies
The URL: https://welaughwecrywecook.com/2012/04/24/balsamic-roasted-garlic-veggies
Creamy Artichoke Basil SaucePosted: April 17, 2012 Filed under: Main Dishes, Vegan | Tags: artichokes, basil, easy dinner, garlic, healthy, low fat, main dish, pasta, quick dinner, roasted bell peppers, side dish, vegan, vegetarian 5 Comments
Motherhood has changed me. We just spent an evening discussing life insurance and wills. I wake up before eight a.m. without an alarm. I no longer pee alone. I don’t shower until noon most days (if I shower at all). And I cook every meal while simultaneously pulling my child out of cabinets, trash cans, and the wash machine … or out from between my legs.
My mom snapped this picture of Jackson last time she was here. He pulls up on my pant legs right behind me and completely immobilizes me. I can’t turn around or squat down to get him or he’ll fall over. Cooking like this is challenging to say the least.
So I love a meal that is quick and easy, but tastes deliciously gourmet. This pasta sauce is exactly that. It takes about five minutes to make and if you pour it over hot pasta, you don’t even have to simmer it. As a bonus, Jackson likes it too, so I can give him little bites of my dinner without making a different meal for him. Mommy and baby approved!
Did I mention there is no cream in this creamy pasta? It’s almost guilt-free, minus the two tablespoons of olive oil. Another bonus for this post baby body!
Creamy Artichoke Basil Sauce
2 garlic cloves, diced
2 T. olive oil
1 14 oz can of artichoke hearts, reserve liquid
1 1/2 roasted red bell peppers (jarred or make your own*)
A palm full of basil, roughly chopped
Juice of 1/2 a lemon
1/4 t. salt
1/4 t. pepper
1/2 t. Italian seasoning
8 oz pasta (I used whole wheat spiral pasta, but any kind you like would be fine)
In a small skillet, heat garlic and olive oil until garlic is just starting to brown. In a blender or food processor, blend all the ingredients including the sauteed garlic and olive oil. Add reserved liquid** from the artichokes (I think I used about a half a cup) to thin out sauce to desired consistency. Taste for seasoning and adjust if needed.
Toss with pasta immediately out of the boiling water. Garnish with a little chopped basil if desired.
*Making your own roasted peppers is easy. Just placing them directly on on a gas burner flame rotating it a few times (like this) or on a pan under the broiler until charred. Then put it in a bowl tightly covered with plastic wrap for a about five minutes. Rub off most of the skin with a damp paper towel. Voila, roasted peppers!
**Pasta water would work great too if you accidentally forget to reserve the liquid from the artichokes. Yes, I speak from experience.
Stir in chickpeas, sauteed veggies, chicken or Italian sausage (or the vegan versions of these)
Smoky Garlic Lemon KalePosted: March 14, 2012 Filed under: Uncategorized, Veggies | Tags: garlic, gluten-free, greens, kale, lemon, side dishes, vegan, vegetarian, veggies 3 Comments
The first time I tasted kale, I must admit, I spit it out and threw it away.
But my vegan daughter continued to wax eloquent about the virtues of kale: its texture, its taste, its nutrition! Then one day I tasted a bite of kale, cooked right. I was an instant Kale Convert. Now I also say, “All hail to kale!” It keeps a nice, un-mushy texture in soups and stews and I love the little bit of chewiness. Like spinach that never turns to slime.
Recently Rachel snapped this picture of her baby, Jackson, overjoyed with his fist full of kale. If this face doesn’t convince you to try it, I’m pretty sure nothing will.
This recipe is a wonderful side dish that I like so much, I could honestly eat the whole bunch for lunch. (And in fact, I just did.) It reminds me of the southern-style greens from my childhood that were cooked all day with bacon. But this recipe adds smoky flavor without bacon, richness without added fat, and only takes about ten minutes to whip up.
Smokey Garlic Lemon Kale
1/2 c. water
1 1/2 t. vinegar
1 bunch kale
2 cloves garlic
1/4 t. smoked paprika (see picture below)
1 t. olive oil
1/2 t. brown sugar
Salt and pepper to taste
Tear stems from kale, then rinse and rough chop into about one inch pieces. “Massage” these pieces with your hands for about five seconds to tenderize them.
Into a skillet put: water, vinegar and 2 peeled cloves of garlic, chopped into about four to six slices each. Boil this mixture and then add the kale. Turn heat down to medium and simmer for about 7 minutes. Check it about 1/2 through cooking to make sure there is enough liquid in the pot to keep the kale from burning. The tricky part is to babysit the kale so that the kale itself absorbs as much liquid as possible, without going dry and burning.
When kale is tender, add olive oil, juice from one half a lemon, and brown sugar. Season with salt and pepper and serve. Serves about 4 people, unless you are me, and ravenous, then it only serves one.
This was printed from: We Laugh, We Cry, We Cook
The site URL: http://welaughwecrywecook.com
The Title: Smokey Garlic Lemon Kale
The URL: https://welaughwecrywecook.wordpress.com/2012/03/14/smokey-garlic-lemon-kale/
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