Vegetables

My challenge? Convince my ten year old that vegetables are not “gross.” I’m glad to report I’m succeeding!

roasted artichoke

I love food that must be eaten slowly, deliberately. I love lobsters, whole fish, and artichokes. I dislike food that you tend to gobble up fast, like fast-food burgers and most sandwiches. But I like artichokes not just because it takes 20 minutes or so to eat one – I also love their intense, unique flavor and the way you slowly build your way from the outer, tougher leaves, through the inner, delicate, tasty leaves, all the way to the yummy heart. Plus, artichokes are good for you – they’re high in fiber, potassium, vitamin C and magnesium.

This simple recipe for roasted artichokes takes some time, but in every other respect, it’s very easy. And the result is a tender, tasty artichoke, flavored with olive oil, lemon and garlic – a true delicacy.
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roasted garlic

Creamy and almost-sweet, roasted garlic is a delicacy. Most recipes for roasted garlic use a whole garlic head, but I rarely have whole garlic in the house (I can’t stand peeling garlic), so I use pre-peeled garlic cloves that I get at Whole Foods.

Roasted garlic is excellent when mashed and spread on warm toast, but I usually serve it scattered on top of any vegetable dish that I might be making that night. Tonight I steamed some broccoli and topped it with melted butter and roasted garlic. Yum.
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sauteed broccolini

Most recipes for sautéed broccolini will tell you to blanch the broccolini first (cook briefly in salted water, then quickly rinse in cold water or dip in ice water). But I like to sauté the broccolini first, until browned and crisp, then add a bit of water to the hot pan, cover and briefly steam, just until the stems are crisp-tender.
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spaghetti squash casserole

Got some leftover spaghetti squash and don’t feel like making spaghetti squash fritters? Try this cheesy, tasty spaghetti squash casserole.
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microwave sweet potatoes

It’s no wonder sweet potatoes have become the darling of the nutrition-conscious Paleo community. They’re high in carbs, but they are very nutritious. A smallish, 7-ounce sweet potato contains 940mg of potassium, 800% of your daily vitamin A requirement, 65% of vitamin C, half your Manganese requirement and a third of vitamin B6. Sweet potatoes are also incredibly delicious, and can be “baked” in the microwave with incredible results.
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roasted cauliflower

High-heat roasting caramelizes the cauliflower and enhances its flavor, further intensified here with olive oil, paprika and coriander.
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stuffed portobello mushrooms

I love these stuffed portobello mushrooms – they are delicious and so pretty. They can work well as an appetizer when you host, or just serve them as a tasty side dish, as I did tonight.

Stuffed and baked portobello mushrooms can become soggy. To avoid sogginess:
1. Wipe clean, don’t wash them (they absorb water).
2. Pre-broil to release some of the water.
3. In the final stage of baking or broiling, broil or bake briefly, just until topping is browned. Baking too long will result in mushy mushrooms that have released their liquid into your filling. If that happens, the only thing you can do is to carefully drain the liquid, and place the mushrooms on paper towels to soak as much of the liquid as you can.
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