The key to plant-based eating? Making vegetables taste so good, you can’t get enough of them. Now’s the time to expand your knowledge of how to make vegetables taste 100% delicious (#stayhome). As a food blogger, cookbook author, and toddler mom, I’ve learned the very best way to get anyone to eat their veggies is using one of these no-fail methods to cook them. Here’s a basic tutorial that works for any veggies you’ve got…like my favorite way to make broccoli taste as irresistible as french fries. (Really!)
Related: Head to my first article in this series, Plant-Based Eating: How to Actually Do It.
To master vegetables, first you’ve got to master knife skills! This is where many home cooks are tripped up. Make sure you’ve got a large, sharp chef’s knife. It’s key to cutting vegetables quickly and correctly. (Here’s a chef’s knife we recommend.)
How to cut each vegetable? Well, that’s a whole cooking class in itself! Here’s a list of tutorial videos to guide you through the cutting process for 20+ of the most popular vegetables. Go to Knife Skills 101: Video Tutorials.
Ok, let’s get to the cooking! Roasting vegetables is my number one favorite way to cook them. It brings out a sweet, earthy flavor, and they come out tender on the inside and crispy and blackened at the edges. Every time I make them, I end up sneaking most of them off the roasting pan because they are just that good. Here’s what to do:
Recipes: Roasted broccoli and roasted cauliflower are transcendental. (As is broccolini if you can find it.) This colorful mix of the best roasted veggies is stunning. Crispy Brussels sprouts and sweet potatoes are a must-try.
Roasting takes a while, so if you’re short on time: consider sauteing! It’s the quickest way to get veggies on the table. You’ll need a skillet and olive oil or butter, and most veggies are usually done in 10 minutes. Saute comes from the French word “to jump,” meaning that you’ll be constantly moving the food in the pan. Here’s what to do:
Let’s say you need food on the table fast and you need to cook from your freezer. Can frozen vegetables taste good? Yes! But here’s what you need to know: frozen vegetables are actually already cooked. They’re blanched (boiled for a few minutes) before packaging, then flash frozen. To avoid mushy veg, you only need to cook them a few minutes. I like adding garlic and lemon to add freshness. Here’s what to do:
With these three basic methods, you can cook all veggies to perfection. Grilling is one of our favorite techniques, and steaming is quick and healthy! For more info, head to How to Cook Vegetables.
Sonja is author of award winning food blog A Couple Cooks and the cookbook Pretty Simple Cooking. Together with her husband, Alex, the two are leading voices on plant-based eating, and authors of a recipe series with Washington Post Food called Voraciously: Plant Powered. Featured from the TODAY Show to Bon Appetit, Sonja seeks to inspire adventurous eating to make the world a better place one bite at a time.
BY Sonja Overhiser - April 13, 2020
Thank you for being here. For being open to enjoying life’s simple pleasures and looking inward to understand yourself, your neighbors, and your fellow humans! I’m looking forward to chatting with you.