Thursday, July 23, 2009

Basic Cooking Skills: Roasted Carrots

Every other Thursday we will post about different basic cooking skills. Knowing how to prepare meals from scratch is a very important step in becoming self-reliant, which in turn is a crucial component of being prepared. Being able to cook meals for your family will give you confidence, more family togetherness time, and lower your food budget=more money for food storage! If you have a basic cooking skill you'd like to learn, email us! These meals contain perishable food items as this is a different series than our food storage recipes.

One of the things that I am absolutely LOUSY at, is feeding my kids veggies. Try as I may, I just don't like canned veggies. And frozen veggies get old real fast. Except for those awesome "steam in a bag" veggies, but hello, pricey. Fresh veggies can be pricey too, but I've learned that whole carrots are a great deal for your buck. Here's a way to make them tasty too.

Any vegetable roasted is delicious: potatoes, squash, (why is that all I can think of?) Just the way it's cooked releases great flavors without removing texture. That's my non-culinary trained opinion.

Grab a few carrots. I know people shy away from buy whole carrots because it's SO much work to wash and peel them, as opposed to buying a bag of baby carrots and well, opening it.

But whole carrots are so much less expensive and taste fresher. Try peeling and slicing a whole bunch one day and sticking them in little baggies to last through a week.

Okay, back to the post at hand. Peel and rinse all the carrots. And yes, that's my toothbrush. I often brush my teeth at the kitchen sink. At least I take my oral hygiene seriously.

Using a sharp knife (really, you'll like the kitchen a whole lot more if your knife is sharp) slice off the tops and bottoms of the carrots and throw them away.

Now slice the carrots into inch or so size chunks, cutting them on an angle makes them look nicer, but doesn't affect the taste. I promise.

Toss all the carrots into an oven safe dish and dot with butter. You don't need to use a lot to get the flavor going. You can also drizzle the olive oil if you are going for a more healthy approach.

Sprinkle with salt and pepper

and maybe add a few more of your favorite spices: cinnamon and nutmeg, or cumin or parsley or dill!

Roast in a 400 degree oven for 20 minutes or until tender when pierced by a fork. Go ahead and try it, they are delicious and inexpensive, and believe it or not, your kids will love 'em. At least mine did and they are VERY picky.


k....mom said...

I sprinkle a little brown sugar on top before baking. It's how I got my kids to eat them when they were little. Now I just do it for me :)

S'mee said...

love Love LOVE roasted carrots! Absolutely my favourite all time veggie. I like them roasted with a nice roast, but plain is great too. Add a bit of butter, mash them up like a potato... heaven!

The Garden of Egan said...

Those look delicious! Going to give them a try!
I agree, "normal" carrots taste so much better and are so much less expensive. Just a few more weeks and we'll be eating them out of the garden....yum.

Sena said...

Don't throw away those peelings, tops and bottoms! Keep a bag or container in the freezer and add all the veggie trimmings you end up with (onion tops, garlic clove butts, celerly greens and bottoms, etc..) and when you've got a good pile, then toss them in a large pot with enough water to cover, a couple bay leaves, salt, pepper, parsley, etc.. and simmer to make your own veggie stock! If you've got left over bones & trimmings, add them for a veggie/meat broth (if the meat is raw, then roast them in the oven first for more flavor). Just strain the large bits out after a couple hours. Crockpots work well too.

No sense in wasting any part of a food source you don't need to. Even after that, what you strain out can usually go out to the compost pile (opinions differ on that though if you included meat).

CheerfulHeart2 said...

Sounds great. Appreciate all the comments. I think I'll try this in the sun oven.

Kathy said...

Broccoli is really good roasted too. Just put olive oil or butter on them then salt and pepper. YUM!

Kimi said...

Eggplant, red peppers, green peppers, any color peppers, onion, garlic, zucchini, it's all good when it's roasted, yum!

StrivingSimply said...

I LOVE making roast parsnips. They're like nutty, slightly spicy, blond carrots. Try them with or without carrots in there, too. It gives the dish a whole new dimension.

Anonymous said...

I buy large cuts of meat and cut them into steaks, stew meat, or ground beef. Sometimes I have pieces that just have so much gristle in them that I don't really want to eat them or feed them to my family. I keep the undesireable pieces of meat (there is still good stuff attached) in a baggie in the freezer and when I get enough built up, I boil them with rice and throw in carrot cuttings and potato peels and boil it then grind it up and make home-made dog food. The dogs don't mind if I use the trimmings and they recognize the containers I store their food in the freezer in. When I get one out they are following me where ever I carry it so they can scarf it down!

Marselyn said...

What a wonderful idea! Can't wait to try it. I also can't wait for your post on how you made veggie burgers with lentils. Please, oh please, share that one soon!

Kristine said...

Can't forget roasted sweet potatoes and asparagus.