All my life I have had my favorite vegetables (French cut green beans and carrots) and my least favorite vegetables (peas). My grandma used to make this creamy poultry casserole and she would put peas in it… I would clean my plate except for a pile of peas on the side! Ugh. As I grew up I found new vegetables that I liked: parsnips, sweet peppers, and tomatoes (let’s not get into the fruit vs vegetable debate right now) and new vegetables that I didn’t like: Brussels sprouts and beets. As a vegan, I decide I would start giving all of these vegetables another try. I have come to the conclusion that some vegetables I won’t like as much as I like others, i.e. Brussels sprouts, but it is ultimately how the vegetable is prepared that determines my likeness scale. So here are 10 ways to prepare 10 “hate-love” vegetables that make those “unfavorites” a little more favorable.
- Beets: Roast the beets, peel, slice thin and top with a soft nut cheese, salt and pepper (my favorite nut cheese is http://www.treelinecheese.com/). You can also shred (or thinly slice) them raw on salads or in veggie wraps. I have come to love beets and that is how the beet came to be part of the VegInspired logo! J
- Brussels sprouts: cut in half, steam until just soft, douse with balsamic vinegar
- Peas: pan fry a shallot in oil, add peas and a couple tablespoons of water, cover and steam for a few minutes, salt and pepper to taste
- Tomatoes: (start with local grown, fresh, & organic… they are the best! Store bought can’t even compare) slice into quarters or circles and top with a little salt or a little oil and balsamic vinegar, if you have fresh basil you can roughly chop and top with fresh basil.
- Cauliflower: toss in a bit of oil and roast at 425* for about 20-25 minutes, stir and rotate the pan halfway through, sprinkle with salt and pepper or toss in your favorite wing sauce! To make mine I use red hot and soy milk (instead of butter) to cut the heat and some seasonings
- Broccoli: sauté in oil until lightly browned, add a few tablespoons of water, cover and steam until desired tenderness (we eat ours a little al denté)
- Cabbage: thinly slice, heat oil or vegan butter (we like Earth Balance), add cabbage and a few tablespoons of water, cover and steam for 7-8 minutes, season with salt and pepper
- Kale: toss it in a smoothie (remove thick stems first), toss it with olive oil and top with nutritional yeast, salt and pepper, or make kale chips
- Baby Spinach(raw): add to smoothies, toss with a “creamy” dressing (I like Annie’s Green Goddess), top with balsamic vinegar (I use the flavored ones – strawberry is my favorite) and a little salt, pepper and slivered almonds.
- Asparagus: toss in a little oil and grill on medium-high for a few minutes or until charred, season with salt and pepper
Most of the vegetables we use are either fresh or frozen. We don’t buy a lot of canned/jarred vegetables (only tomatoes, artichokes, roasted red peppers, and anything pickled). Watch for future posts on we utilize our community supported agriculture (CSA) box to make creative meals with new vegetables (celeriac/celery root and turnips were our new vegetables this year).
Share in the comment section your favorite way to cook up vegetables!