Tag Archives: roast

Roasted Artichokes (Better than Steamed and Easier than You Think!)

16 Apr

I was always intimidated by preparing artichokes…it seemed like quite a task to get anything edible from this armadillo of a vegetable. But when a recent manager’s special at the local supermarket had eight of them for $1.99, I figured it was a sign that it was time to try.

It's okay to crowd them into the baking dishArtichokes (Cynara scolymus) are thistles, but very delicious thistles. Large globe ones come from the central stem, while babies come from the sides.

I love the way you eat them when steamed or roasted whole…you remove each leaf and hold the pointy end while dragging our teeth on the stem end to get the flesh off. It’s like a delicious secret that you have to tease out with your hands and teeth. And then you are left with the center which is creamy and nutty and entirely delicious.

Pedro gets on the chop

Pedro gets on the chop

Although like many “manager’s specials” these particular artichokes were not at their bright and tight best, they had nice smooth green leaves – if they were a bit separated from the core, well at $1.99 I wasn’t going to be fussed. This was an experiment in technique, after all, so if they weren’t artichokes at their peak, it didn’t matter so much. And the following technique brought out the best in them. Continue reading

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Radish Revelation x 2: Roasted Roots and Sauteed Greens

30 May

We are eating from the garden! We are eating from the garden!

I cannot tell you how pleased we are with the French Breakfast radishes. No, we are not eating them for breakfast. No, we do not have any desire to suddenly become French (although a pied a terre in Paris or a cottage in the South of France would be very nice, thank you).

But the French Breakfast radishes? This little piggy said “Oui, oui, oui!” all the way home.

They are the easiest thing ever to plant and grow, don’t mind being crowded, move fast (like less than four weeks to edibility) and  are easy for a preschooler with no patience and limited fine motor skills to harvest.

Because we are pulling them out of the ground, and not out of a little plastic pouch, we also get the radish greens, so today’s blog is a double feature. You can use the whole thing (well, I do cut off the stringy rooty bit)!

However, because we pull them out of the ground, they are very, very dirty. In fact, I just found out that rather than harvest lettuce from the garden, my dad has still been buying clamshells of mixed greens from the store, “because I don’t feel like cleaning all that dirt….”

Seriously.

Let me just move on from that one and say, if you are willing to deal with the dirt (you may want to hose them down over the garden bed so you don’t lose all that good soil), the freshness of these radishes is amazing. And the sweetness that comes out in roasting is astonishing. The greens are great too, in the way that all leafy greens are great (to me). Saute with garlic and love them up. So here are your two recipes for the the same veg. Rock on!

(Full disclosure: my darling son – who planted, watered, thinned and harvested these with his own hammy little hands –  tried a bite of the roasted ones and spit them out. Whatever. More for me.)

Roasted Radishes

20-30 radish bulbs, topped and tailed (radish greens can be reserved and used for salad or sautéed with oil and garlic), and sliced in half

1 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

1 Tbs salted butter (or 1 Tbs unsalted butter and a sprinkle of salt)

1 -2 tsp fresh lemon juice

Preheat oven to 450°F.

Place radishes on a rimmed baking dish (lined with foil if you prefer). Smother with remaining ingredients and roast for 15-20 minutes or until browning at the edges. Sprinkle with additional salt, if desired. Serve.

Sauteed Radish Greens

1 -2 Tbs extra virgin olive oil

Three cloves garlic, minced

Radish greens from 20-30 young radishes, thoroughly rinsed and dried, stems removed, if desired

Salt to taste

Heat olive oil in sauté pan at medium high until liquid and fragrant. Add garlic, lower heat and cook for one minute or longer – until lightly golden. Add radish greens and stir to coat. Cook at medium heat until bright green and wilted. Serve on its own, or as an addition to a sandwich.

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