Sunday, October 24, 2010

Roasting Vegetables For Easy Sunday Fare

This past week, I roasted some vegetables (beets and butternut squash) and thought it an uncomplicated and healthy way to cook and decided to try some more today for a quick and easy Sunday meal. It was such a fabulous fall day that I really didn't want to spend it in the kitchen and roasting made it very easy not to. 

Roasting is certainly a summery way to cook, usually on the grill, but oven roasting seems so 'fall-ish' to me. The color and scent of the produce makes the kitchen feel warm and cozy even on a sunny Indian summer kind of day like we had here in Staten Island this weekend. 

I had another butternut squash and was determined to make it in the style that was used as a topping on the risotto I made last week. Cut the squash in half (top cut from round bottom), peel and cut into cubes. Slice the round bottom in two and cut out the seeds and pulp, peel and cut into cubes as well. Place the raw, cut squash into a large plastic bag, add 1/4 cup of olive oil, 1 tsp. kosher salt, 1/2 tsp fresh ground pepper and 1/2 tsp. nutmeg. Seal bag and shake to coat. Place squash on cookie sheet and oven roast for about 1 hour @350 degrees.

For whole carrots, peel and coat with olive oil, salt and pepper in the same manner as above. Place on cookie sheet and roast for about 1/2 hour.

Another quick side dish I made is a spinach and goat cheese galette. A couple of weeks ago I made a plum galette and had a small amount of pate brisee left over. I froze it and defrosted it yesterday (not sure if it would actually still taste good). I rolled it out on a greased cookie sheet, topped it with fresh baby spinach, dabs of goat cheese and about 1/2 cup of  chopped walnuts.  Drizzle olive oil and fold edges in to make a rectangle.  Bake for about 1/2 hour until the crust turns golden. Delicious!!

Pate Brisee
Makes 1 double-crust or 2 single-crust 9- to 10-inch pies (yes, you can freeze it) 
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water

  • In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt, and sugar. 
  • Add butter, and process until the mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.
  • With machine running, add ice water in a slow, steady stream through feed tube. Pulse until dough holds together without being wet or sticky; be careful not to process more than 30 seconds. 
  • Divide dough into two equal balls. 
  • Flatten each ball into a disc and wrap in plastic. 
  • Transfer to the refrigerator and chill at least 1 hour. 

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