I’m not a winter veggie fan. Brassicas are not really my thing. So midweek when I only have the energy to throw something together for dinner and not follow a recipe, I often struggle with ideas.
This week we had two absolute winners, more by accident than design and here they are.
Simplicity! Marcus had a craving for a back to basic bowl of steamed veg and he offered to cook. I never turn down that offer! Carrots sliced on the diagonal, florets of cauliflower and broccoli. All steamed in the same pot with the vegetables being added into the pot in the order above as we reckon all of them require a little different cooking time. Then tossed in a bowl with butter and a little salt and pepper. They looked vibrant and inviting and their taste didn’t disappoint. They still had that beautiful firmness like a vegetable al dente. Our bowl of steamed vegetables accompanied a steak but I would definitely call them the highlight of the meal. Yum.
Tomato braised veg
Grab a pan with a lid. We use a nonstick wok with a glass lid. It is our go to dish for many meals.
Saute a small diced brown onion in a little extra virgin olive oil and butter. Go for a lower heat and soften it rather than brown it. Add a generous sprinkle of dried oregano. Then add two chopped tomatoes and stir. At this stage I add in a sprinkle of Tasman sea salt, a teaspoon of chicken stock concentrate and a little water. When it is bubbling away merrily and the tomato has started to soften add in your veg. Last night we used small cauliflower florets and towards the end some chopped broccolini. During the cook I needed to add a little extra water. (This is a good time to check for taste and adjust seasonings if needed) The end result was a beautiful braise with a little gloss from the oil and butter. Soft vegetables but not overcooked. Spooned into a shallow bowl they really did look good and tasted great. Green beans are lovely done this way too.
I’m finding this a reliable method of cooking when I want something a bit tasty and a bit saucy to accompany a basic protein. Last night we barbecued some pork spare ribs while this was simmering away and they worked really well together.