Boom, Roasted

For many, autumn is a season of strong emotions: the woeful resentment of summer’s fleeting warmth, or the sentimental anticipation of campfires and bourbon.

For me, fall fuels the fiery need to cremate my vegetables. A deep roasting is one of the greatest ways to honor a vegetable. By cooking it at a high temperature, you are helping moisture escape, thereby enhancing the vegetable’s very character and sweetness. You are essentially creating what Nietzsche would call the über-veggie. Let the five easy recipes on pages 74–75 introduce you to the radical world of roasting.

Cook’s note: NEVER roast veggies with extra virgin olive oil! EVOO at a high temperature burns, and becomes carcinogenic – save it for salads and instead try canola, sunflower, peanut, or grape-seed oil – all suitable for high-temp cooking.

roasted raditudepics-5Moroccan-Spiced Cauliflower
serves four

1 large head (about 5 cups) cauliflower, cut into small florets
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. smoked paprika
1/4 tsp. ginger powder
1 tsp. cumin
1 tsp. salt
2 tbsp. golden raisins
2 tbsp. slivered almonds
1/4 cup oil
Toss all ingredients except almonds and raisins in a bowl, and place on a baking sheet.
Bake at 425 degrees for 25 minutes.
Add raisins and almonds and bake for another 10 minutes.
Toss with three tablespoons flat parsley and serve.

roasted raditudepics-11Maple Cider Apples and Sprouts
serves four

1 1/2 cups Brussels sprouts, tips cut off and halved
1 1/2 cups apples, half-inch cubed and tossed in lemon juice (to keep from browning)
1/2 cup apple cider vinegar
2 tbsp. maple syrup
2 tbsp. oil
1 tsp. salt
Toss all ingredients in a bowl and marinate for 30 minutes.
Scoop Brussels sprouts and apples out of bowl with your hands, allowing marinating liquid to stay in the bowl, and put sprouts and apples on a baking sheet.
Bake apples and sprouts at 425 degrees for 40 minutes.
While apples and sprouts are in the oven, reduce marinade in a small saucepan to two tablespoons.
When apples and Brussels sprouts are done, remove from oven and toss in reduced marinade liquid; garnish with fresh thyme sprigs and serve.

roasted raditudepics-choke3Sunchokes w/ Lemon + Lavender
serves four

4 cups sun chokes
(washed thoroughly)
1 tbsp. lemon juice + zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp. lavender
5 thin rounds of lemon slices
1/2 tsp. smoked salt
2 tbsp. oil
Toss all ingredients together in a bowl and put on a baking sheet.
Bake at 425 degrees for 30 minutes.
Garnish with an additional sprinkle of smoked salt and lavender.

roasted raditudepics-2Hot and Honeyed Winter Squash + Carrots
serves four

2 cups carrots (either small fresh ones from your garden or sliced about half-inch thick on the bias), boiled until just tender
2 cups winter squash (such as butternut or acorn) sliced half-inch thick
2 tsp. harissa (Middle Eastern chili paste – find this at your local halal market or Middle Eastern grocery
2 tbsp. honey

1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. sumac (also available at a middle eastern grocery)
1 tbsp. oil
Toss all ingredients in a bowl and place on a baking sheet.
Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.

roasted raditudepics-13Fennel and Potatoes w/Citrus and Rosemary
serves four

3 Yukon Gold potatoes, boiled whole and sliced (skin on) into quarter-inch thick rounds
1 large bulb fennel, stalks and fronds removed, sliced
vertically, quarter-inch thick
Zest of 1 ruby red grapefruit
2 sprigs of rosemary, de-stemmed
1 tsp salt
1/2 tsp. fennel seeds
1/2 tsp. ground coriander
Toss all ingredients in a bowl, and place on a baking sheet.
Bake at 425 degrees for 35 minutes.
Garnish with a little kosher salt and extra rosemary.