Monday, November 12, 2012

Sunday Dinners: Pre-Thanksgiving Veggie Roast!

Thanksgiving has always been my kids' favorite holiday. (Well, maybe Christmas snuck in for a bit there!) But seriously, that family get-together holiday--was the one that Sofia and Wes always loved. Though I'm pretty sure that most of it was due the family factor (like me, they like having everyone around!), a lot of it has also been the food.

Since I started making Thanksgiving, back in 1993, I've kept  and pretty much repeated a kind of core of recipes (balsamic-marinated turkey, cornbread sausage stuffing, cranberry-meets-raspberry and toasted almond relish, and a few more). This year, because of a few dietary changes in my family, I'm playing with some vegetarian dishes as well as other variations. And though I'm the first to tell you I regularly experiment on my friends and family--as far as trying new meals on 'em--this time I thought I might do some playing before the big day!

So on this Sunday, I made two dishes that I'll also make on Thanksgiving: one is a roasted vegetable dish (the one you'll see the recipe for here in a moment!), and the other is a Latin-style Chorizo-Apple "stuffing" (okay this one is so not vegetarian!), which I'll be writing about on my Latin Twist column on Friday.

This medley of local veggies, golden beets, cauliflower, and leeks, was a big hit! (And my love affair with golden beets continues! Here's the link for my  golden beet soup recipe, the one that started it all, which I posted on the 29th.) Hope you like this one!

Roasted Golden Beets and Cauliflower.
Serves 6 to 8

1 bunch (about five) golden beets
2 to 3 tablespoons olive oil
1 large head cauliflower (about 3 pounds)
1 leek
1 teaspoon coarse salt
1/4 teaspoon coarsely-ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 400°F.Wash the beets as best you can. Place them in a lightly greased pan, and just drizzle a bit of olive oil on top. Roast for about 40 minutes, turning from time to time (your home, by the way, will smell lovely!) until they feel tender to a knife pierce. Set aside. When cool enough to handle, cut off the knots, and into chunks. (I kept the skin on--for the most part--but you may want to remove it!)

Rinse cauliflower; cut into quarters. Cut off and discard leaves and cores; cut quarters into 1/4- to 1/2-inch-thick slices or wedges. Spread evenly on a baking sheet. Rinse and slice the leek, and springle the slices on top. Add a bit of olive oil, and some salt and pepper.

Bake the cauliflower approximately 20 to 25 minutes, turning every 10 minutes, or until cauliflower is  caramelized and slightly tender. Remove the cauliflower from the oven, stir in the beets, and serve warm or at room temperature.

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