Regardless of cooking method (broiling, sautéing, roasting). The following principals should be applied:
- Veggies should be cut in uniform shapes and size to promote even cooking method and an aesthetically appealing product
- Cook veggies for the shortest time possible to preserve texture, color , and nutrients.
- Cook veggies right before serving or as close to meal time as possible.
- Add an acid such as lemon or white wine vinegar to white(cauliflower) and red veggies (tomatoes and red bell peppers) to preserve pigment.
The terms roasting and baking are used interchangeably when referring to vegetables. Roasting is used to bring out the natural sweetness of many vegetables while preserving their nutritional values. Hearty veggies such as winter squash and eggplant are especially well suited for roasting of baking. You can bake veggies whole or cut into uniform-sized pieces. Squash is usually cut into large pieces and brussels sprouts do well cut in half.
Seasoning Vegetables to Be Roasted or Baked
Veggies may be seasoned with salt and pepper and rubbed with butter or oil before baking, or they may be seasoned afterward with a wide variety of herbs and spices. Oiling the vegetables helps them brown and crisp in the hot oven. Some vegetables, such as winter squashes and sweet potatoes, may be seasoned with brown sugar or honey as well.
Procedure for roasting or baking vegetables:
- Wash the vegetables. Peel, cut and prepare them as desired or directed in the recipe.
- Season the vegetables and rub or toss with oil or butter if desired.
- Place the vegetables in a baking dish and bake in a preheat oven until done – 425 degrees for 20-30 minutes.
- Parchment paper works well to line the baking sheet for high heat method. Gives me perfect veggies every time, cuts down on amount of oil you need to use and makes for easy cleanup.