My carnivorous husband now loves broccoli. Thank you roasting!
After years of vehemently hating broccoli, I recently presented him with his first roasted broccoli. One bite in and he screamed “what the hell?”. As I prepared to apologize for my experiment, he continued and said “I don’t know what you did to this but it’s delicious!”. The truth is that roasting can be transformational for broccoli and most other vegetables. The oven’s heat coaxes out the vegetable’s natural sweetness and turns it into crispy, caramelized morsels of deliciousness.
For me, roasting has also been a revelation. When I first discovered that I could roast my own beef and turkey, I couldn’t stop doing it! After years of eating processed meats in my lunchtime sandwich, I was liberated. No more rubbery, oversalted “deli meats” for me – just real food. Using your oven and a bit of seasoning, you too can prepare the juiciest, most flavorful slices of roast beef and turkey.
The Roasting technique involves cooking a tender piece in a dry atmosphere (oven or spit).
- Best for large pieces of tender meat and other proteins
- Also useful for vegetables
Technique for Meat:
- Season with salt and pepper (if possible, store in fridge overnight)
- Bring the meat to room temperature
- If you’re using a large piece of meat, tie it to ensure even cooking and help it retain its shape
- Dry it thoroughly to help produce a nice brown crust
- Sear the piece by either: browning the exterior in a hot pan on the stove and then transferring to the oven OR by raising the temperature of your oven to 450* for the first 15 minutes of cooking and then lowering the temperature to 300* to more gently cook the interior for the remainder of its time in the oven
- Cook the piece, turning occasionally to ensure even cooking
- Baste with fat to keep moist – either spoon on fat that has dripped from the meat and accumulated at the bottom of the pan or introduce butter or oil onto the surface of the meat
- Remove from the oven when a thermometer reads 165* for chicken and an average of 145* for all other meats (depending on how rare you like your meat)
- Allow to rest so that the juices can redistribute
- Flavor the juices that remain in the pan and serve them on the side when presenting the meat
Technique for Vegetables:
- Preheat oven to 400*
- Toss vegetables in olive oil, salt and pepper
- Lay vegetables onto a baking sheet in one layer
- Bake for approximately 20 minutes – you’ll know it’s ready when the vegetables are deeply caramelized