Summer is officially over… it’s a bit sad, but this summer was absolutely amazing and there’s much to remember, isn’t it?
This hot season was bright, warm, juicy, sweet and delicious! So many berries, peaches, apricots, apples, tomatoes, cucumbers, zucchini and much more.
But autumn is here and very soon we will find ourselves in the kitchen baking hearty pumpkin pies, making warming spicy curries, drinking delicious teas from berries harvested in the summer… There comes a season when there will be much less fresh vegetables and fruits.
Autumn and winter in Russia are the seasons of root vegetables. Therefore, I would like to share my favorite and the simplest delicious recipe for the baked vegetables.
What are we baking?
Today we are talking about potatoes, carrots and beets. These vegetables are similar in structure and are cooked approximately in the same time (well, maybe beet just a little longer). They also work perfectly well with each other and you can use same seasonings for each of these three veggies which greatly simplifies the process.
The taste of properly baked vegetables is special. They become fragrant, crunchy outside, but well-cooked and soft inside. They absorb the smells of herbs, oil, garlic …
The secret is in simplicity
To make potatoes tastier, I recommend not to peel the skin. Carrots and beets should be peeled of course. Although, if you bake beets only, then it’s best to bake them whole and in foil. But that’s another story…
Let’s return to our vegetables. To begin with, in order to get rid of the excess starch, I advise you to cut the potatoes into equal slices and put them in cold water for about 10 minutes, changing the water couple of times.
Rinse the potatoes, dry them with a paper towel and put in a large bowl with similarly sliced carrots and beets. Thus, the vegetables will be baked evenly and at the same time.
Combine all the vegetables in one large bowl, add fresh rosemary (or thyme, or both), add black pepper, salt to taste (I don’t like too much salt myself), add paprika if you like, and/or some cayenne pepper. And, most importantly, any vegetable oil. I usually use olive oil, but you can take rapeseed or unflavored sunflower oil.
Amount? It’s up to you really, but it’s important that you cover all vegetables evenly with the oil, mixing them well with herbs and seasonings. I usually use two tablespoons of olive oil for a large bowl of sliced vegetables.
Oh, I also mentioned garlic. Don’t add garlic to your vegetables when you just put them into the oven, otherwise, it will get burnt. Garlic cloves should be thrown to the vegetables 10 minutes before the timer rings, say, 40 minutes after you put the vegetables in the oven.
This recipe calls for patience
Trust me, even if you feel you want to take vegetables out of the oven after 25 minutes of cooking, do not do it. Give them another 25-30 minutes and you’ll see how miraculously they turn from soft and wet, boiled like, to golden, crispy and incredibly tasty!
Baked this way, the vegetables are delicious on their own, even without sauces or dressings. But these are really a great side dish, too, complemented by snacks like guacamole, hummus or baba ganush, for example.
Believe me, your guests or family will love this simple dish! Moreover, you can make it all year round!