Roasted Vegetables Primer

an expanse of roasted vegetables including potatoes, swee potatoes, peppers and squash

This recipe is from Good and Cheap.

Good and Cheap cover 2nd edition

Good and Cheap is a gorgeous cookbook for people with limited income, particularly on a $4/day food stamps budget. The PDF is free and has been downloaded more than 1,000,000 times. I have more cookbooks, too!

When the weather turns cool, I only want to eat warm, flavorful food—in comes roasted vegetables season. Roasting is easy, it warms up the kitchen, and it makes the house smell like the holidays. If you’re uncertain how to prepare a new vegetable, you usually can’t go wrong with roasting— most things end up sweeter, with nice crunchy bits. If you roast a bunch of vegetables at the beginning of the week, you can eat them throughout the week in various ways: with eggs at breakfast, folded into an omelette, as a side dish, in a taco or sandwich, on toast, or with any grain.


an expanse of roasted vegetables including potatoes, swee potatoes, peppers and squash
Roasted Vegetable Primer
Print Recipe
Roasting is easy, it warms up the kitchen, and it makes the house smell like the holidays. If you’re uncertain how to prepare a new vegetable, you usually can’t go wrong with roasting— most things end up sweeter, with nice crunchy bits.
an expanse of roasted vegetables including potatoes, swee potatoes, peppers and squash
Roasted Vegetable Primer
Print Recipe
Roasting is easy, it warms up the kitchen, and it makes the house smell like the holidays. If you’re uncertain how to prepare a new vegetable, you usually can’t go wrong with roasting— most things end up sweeter, with nice crunchy bits.
Ingredients
Basics
  • vegetables chopped or kept whole in some cases
  • olive oil or butter
  • Salt and pepper
Root Vegetables
  • potatoes
  • sweet potatoes
  • beets
  • turnips
  • onions
  • carrots
  • sunchokes
  • parsnips
  • kohlrabi
Non-root vegetables
  • bell peppers
  • winter squash
  • broccoli
  • brussels sprouts
  • cauliflower
  • asparagus
  • eggplant
  • fennel
Extras
  • whole garlic cloves unpeeled
  • slices lemon
  • lemon zest
  • anything you would pair with roast chicken
  • sage
  • oregano
  • thyme
  • bay leaves
  • any dry spice combination you prefer
Instructions
  1. Set the oven to 400 °F.
  2. Clean and chop your vegetables. Generally, I prefer to leave the skin on for the following reasons: skin tastes nice and gets crispy; there’s a lot of nutrition in the skin; peeling is slow! Just be sure to wash the vegetables thoroughly.
  3. It’s up to you how you want to chop your vegetables. Many are nice roasted whole, like new potatoes or little sunchokes or turnips—they will be crispy and salty on the outside and bursting with fluffy, starchy goodness inside. The general rule is that the smaller you chop things, the faster they cook, so try to keep everything about the same size so nothing cooks faster than anything else.
  4. Dump your vegetables into a roasting pan. Drizzle everything with olive oil or melted butter—about 2 tablespoons per medium-sized roasting pan. Season generously with salt and pepper and add any other extras from the list at right. Use your hands to coat the vegetables thoroughly with the oil and spices.
  5. If roasting root vegetables, pop the pan in the oven for 1 hour or longer, but check on the vegetables after 45 minutes. For non-roots they may be done after 20 to 30 minutes. Test them by poking them with a knife. If it meets no resistance, they’re finished; if not, let them cook longer. Don’t worry: it’s not much of a problem if you overcook them. Unlike vegetables overcooked through boiling or steaming, overcooked roasted vegetables may dry out a bit, but still retain their shape and flavor.
  6. After you pull the vegetables out of the oven, push them around with a spatula to free them from the pan. Remove any garlic cloves and smash them into a fine paste (removing the skins at this point), then put the garlic back in the pan and mix together.
  7. Squeeze the juice out of any lemons and discard the woody bits of any cooked herbs. Add a little more butter, a bit of favorite sauce, a little soft cheese or mayonnaise, and serve.

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Leanne Brown

Hi! I'm Leanne Brown, a home cook in Brooklyn by way of Canada. I write cookbooks, like the one below!

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Good and Cheap cover 2nd edition

Good and Cheap is a gorgeous cookbook for people with limited income, particularly on a $4/day food stamps budget. The PDF is free and has been downloaded more than 1,000,000 times. I have more cookbooks, too!

Sign up for my newsletter!