Tag Archives: roast

Roasted Asparagus

30 Apr

Roasted AsparagusIt’s asparagus season, so make the best of it! Fresh asparagus is fine steamed (for about 5 minutes, till it’s bright green and tender but not mushy) — but it’s even better roasted!

Look for medium-thick stalks that are firm and unwrinkled. Avoid any bunches that have moist tips.

The easiest way to prepare asparagus for cooking is to simply snap off the hard part at the bottom by bending it with your hands — it will snap in the right place.

I sometimes vary this recipe by sprinkling the asparagus with a mixture of spices instead of the garlic and lemon peel. I have a great one that I got in New Orleans called Joe’s Hot Stuff (with a husband named Joe, how could I resist?). It includes garlic, paprika, red pepper and thyme. Trader Joe’s “21 Seasoning Salute” is also good.

If you have very thin stalks of asparagus, they will take less time to cook. Remember, overcooking asparagus is worse than undercooking!

If you have any asparagus left over after your dinner, cut it up to use in an omelette or salad.

Ingredients:

1 lb. fresh asparagus
2 tsp. olive oil
½ tsp. garlic powder
1 tsp. grated lemon peel

Directions:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees (if you’re already cooking something else in the oven at a lower temperature, you can do the asparagus at the same time, just plan to cook it a little longer).

Wash asparagus and snap off the hard bottom part. Line a large baking pan with foil and lay the asparagus on it in a single layer. Drizzle with the olive oil. Sprinkle the garlic powder and lemon peel over the asparagus.

Roast for about 8 to 10 minutes, turning once during the cooking. You should be able to pierce the asparagus easily with a fork, but it should still be firm, not mushy. It might brown slightly; that’s OK.

Serves 4

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Roast Potatoes

8 Feb

Roast potatoesHere’s a very simple recipe for roast potatoes, which make a wonderful accompaniment to roast chicken, any kind of meat roast and broiled or baked fish. My mother used to make potatoes in the same roasting pan as the chicken or beef, but somehow they never got as crispy and brown as when I make them in a separate pan.

Ingredients:

4 large potatoes (or more smaller potatoes)
1 medium onion
2 Tbs. olive oil
½ tsp. paprika

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees for convection setting (recommended) or 375 degrees for regular baking. (If you’re not cooking a chicken or roast at the same time, you might want to do them at 400, and they’ll cook faster.)

Peel the potatoes, rinse them and dry with a paper towel. Cut them into pieces roughly 1 to 1½ inches square. Place potato pieces in a bowl with the oil and paprika, and use your hands to toss so that the pieces are evenly coated. Spray a baking pan with cooking spray – the pan should be large enough to hold all the potato pieces in a single layer. Spread the potatoes in the pan and roast for about 20 minutes.

Cut the onion vertically into thin pieces and add to the pan; stir the potatoes and the onion. Continue to roast until they are nicely browned, stirring every 15 to 20 minutes. This will take 1 to 1½ hours in a convection oven, a little longer in a regular oven.

Serves 4