I am a prolific veggie roaster. After sweeping in from work, before I’ve even taken off my heels I’ve got the oven heated and chopped veggies with little more than olive oil, sea salt and fresh cracked pepper on their way in. It’s hard to beat from a time standpoint, and there’s something to be said for keeping it simple and just letting your veggies do the talking.
But to elevate my veggie game just a little bit, there’s this braising method – still refreshingly simple, just dressed up a little bit. There’s something so nice about the fresh cleanness of the veggies, gently cooked to maintain their shape and color, with the richness of the immensely flavorful olive oil. It makes for a pretty side dish, perfect to be mopped up with crusty bread, or even a light meal over rice or quinoa.
It works for all kinds of vegetables, you just add them in the order of cooking time. I used baby red potatoes, carrots, and asparagus, but you can swap them out for whatever you like, just add the longer-cooking ones first. I love this combination of aromatics but you can play around with them as well depending on taste and what you have around in the kitchen.
Olive Oil Braised Veggies
- 1/2 cup olive oil
- 1 lemon, cut into thin wedges (divided)
- 1/4 cup sundried tomatoes, cut into strips
- 3-4 cloves garlic, peeled
- good pinch red chili flakes
- sprig of rosemary
- salt & pepper
- 1 pound baby red potatoes (cut the larger ones in half)
- 2-3 shallots, quartered
- 2-3 carrots, peeled and cut into medium sized sticks
- 1 bunch asparagus, trimmed
Heat olive oil on medium high. Add a quarter of the lemon wedges (save the rest for serving), and allow them to slightly brown. Add sundried tomatoes, garlic cloves, red pepper flakes and rosemary, and stir for just a minute. Lower heat to medium low and add the new potatoes, shallots, and a good sprinkle of salt and pepper. Stir to coat with the oil and cook for about 20 minutes. Add carrots, stir gently to coat, and cook covered for another 20 minutes. Check to see that veggies are fork-tender but not falling apart. Add asparagus, again stir gently to coat, and cook covered for 7-10 minutes until asparagus is just done.
Remove from heat and serve with lemon wedges, a sprinkle of parsley or basil if you want, and either with crusty bread or over rice or quinoa. Make sure to get some of the yummy olive oil on top!