Power-Packed Five Root Veggies Bowl—a colorful and tasty meal.
I do not think I broke any cooking rules on this one. I am currently taking an online Forks over Knives cooking course through Rouxbe. However, I had not yet gotten to the unit and lessons on moist cooking with submersion or steam. I have now taken them and the next recipe will have a little lesson added.
I had a bunch of root veggies staring at me when I opened either the cabinet to the left of the refrigerator or the next-to-the-bottom bin in the fridge. I needed a plan. And a one-pot meal.
Okay, the one-pot meal was not a necessity, but sometimes simple is better and less clean up. Less water, save the environment, one burner, save electricity.
I spied an orange carrot, golden beets, sweet potato, russet potato, and a couple of cute, small, red potatoes. A plan was forming.
Sweet potatoes are not potatoes, and that was news to me. It is a tuber, and although sometimes called a yam, yams are different from sweet potatoes. However, I love sweet potatoes and I love potatoes, yams though, I am not a huge fan.
Recipes and supplies:
Root veggies of choice: carrots (I used one large orange one); 2 beets (golden); potatoes (2 small russet, small or medium red); sweet potato, 2 baby ones).
Pepper: hot if you desire. I had serrano and used two.
Tomatoes: sweet grape ones, about 15.
Parsley: fresh curly since that came in my weekly Misfits box.
Spices/herbs/condiments: Dijon mustard or yellow or seeds, cracked black pepper, raw pumpkin seeds, raw sunflower seeds, optional raw sesame seeds.
Oil: optional; I used a little EVOO (extra-virgin olive oil). Do not get me started on how a virgin can be extra-virgin.
Water: I put tap water in the pitcher with a filter to prepare fresh for use.
Misc.: One medium to large pot with a lid, colander, utensils, knife of choice for chopping that feels good in your hand and easy to use, large glass bowl, cutting board, towels, something to hold cut off ends (a home compost bin would be awesome), mixing spoons, serving bowls, utensils, a sense of humor, a good chopping rhythm, patience, and love.
1. Mise en place: all of the above items in order of use. Wash and place all veggies on a towel. Prepare water if filtering it.
2. Start chopping the root veggies into bite-size pieces.
I learned I am a chopper when I took the cutting lesson. Did you know there are lots of precise methods to cut? Small, medium, and large dice are either 1/8 inch, ¼ inch, or ½ inch pieces, and then there are the julienne strips, thin or fatter. Chopping though is not a science, and it is not a precise skill, and that works for me in the kitchen. Precision in my order, my shelves is a must for me. Hand me a knife and no way. I like my irregular pieces from chopping.
I do love knives, a Finnish trait. From my fascination with knives to my grandfather’s knives to my first Swiss Army pocket knife, to my late husband’s knives. Strange.
3. I start placing the cut pieces into the pot that I have on my counter for now. Add water to cover the veggies with a little extra, secure the lid, and place on a burner on high. Once they start a high boil, I remove the lid and lower the heat to medium. Keep testing with a fork, or the point of a sharp knife to get a good consistency.
Use Goldilocks’s principle: not too hard, not too soft; just right.
4. While the cooking is taking place, prepare your bowl. If you had not chopped the remaining ingredients in step one, chop them now; it should be only the hot pepper and parsley. Your decision about whole or cut grape tomatoes. I do either, cut in two lets the black pepper dance with the cut side.
5. I like to put my mustard in a large glass bowl, and oil too, if using, first. Usually, a 1:1 ratio works for me. You can add the parsley and tomatoes now, or after the root veggies.
6. Once you achieve the desired result of the cooked veggies, pour everything into a colander in the sink and let it drain.
7. Add the hot veggies to the bowl, add the black pepper and anything not already in. Gently rotate the bowl as you fold everything together. I like a silicone spoon-like spatula that is not too flimsy. I have three—one red, one blue, and one light green, and each is shaped slightly differently and has different densities.
Serve in individual bowls or plates, they do not need to match. Diversity is good. I eat alone; my cats do not like what I prepare, and so, I just plunge my fork into the large glass bowl. I always make enough for two with these bowls and this works well covered and put in the fridge and eaten cold. I try to avoid leftovers, so I eat most for my large main noon meal and any remaining later in the afternoon. I have decided that it is not really a leftover. Okay, it probably is.
Remember to give gratitude. Eat in peace and take some time for a postprandial rest and digest.
No one from the animal kingdom was harmed for this meal. Another save for this tiny blue marble we call Earth.
Next recipe will be a one-pot steam, no oil meal.
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