Full of flavor and caramelized sweetness, roasted vegetables are beloved by Chowhounds. A few simple techniques—plus some seasoning tricks—will help you turn your winter produce into delectable sides.
"My tip is to roast really hot," says mcf. "I do so at 425 [degrees Fahrenheit], for about an hour on the very bottom of the oven to promote caramelization." And it's important not to crowd the pan or use too much oil, will47 says. "For large quantities of vegetables, and if you're not deglazing, a sheet pan may actually be better than a [roasting pan]," says will47.
To flavor the vegetables, some hounds toss them with oil, salt, and pepper before putting them in the oven, and then dress them with a vinaigrette after they're cooked. Some seasonings work well if they're added before cooking, though. monavano likes to halve Brussels sprouts, and then toss them with extra-virgin olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and maple syrup prior to roasting. "I try to make enough for another side dish for dinner, but [then I] eat them all myself," says monavano.
Garlic also pairs well with roasted veggies. "I've been adding whole heads of garlic, split into single cloves but left unpeeled," says Gio. "I do slice off the root end though so the finished roasted garlic is easily slipped out of the skin. Serve the vegetables on the dinner plate and squeeze the garlic over all or individual pieces. Sweet and luscious," Gio says.
"A wonderful cookbook ... is The Roasted Vegetable by Andrea Chesman," says The Librarian. "My current favorite is a mix of cubed sweet potato, parsnips, baby carrots, and apples seasoned with salt, cinnamon, and olive oil that I came up with using the cooking times and [temperatures] from her book. Goes great with smoked pork chops!"
Check out CHOW's gallery of 14 roasted vegetable sides.