Food Talk And Fabulous Finds - Veggies. Veggies. Veggies. Getting repetitive!

02-28-2008, 07:27 PM
I'm trying to significantly increase the number of veggies my family eats. In the past, days might go by with no veggies. Now, I've been hiding them in stuff when I can. For instance, tonight, we're having Jamaican meat pies. After trying the recipe (which already had onions and tomatoes), I realized peas would go nicely and, sure enough, they do. I add zucchini to tomato sauce, spinach to meatloaf, etc. I'm also serving veggie side dishes, but here's where things get bland. Steamed broccoli with butter and dill. Steamed mixed veggies with butter, salt and pepper. Carrot sticks and cucumber slices with dip. And, well, that's about it, I think! So far, the whole family has been happy with this, but I fear it's going to get boring. I've found interesting "recipes" for veggie dishes, but a lot of them involve adding a lot of other ingredients like cheese, bread, Ritz crackers, etc. - which ramp up the calories. They'd almost be more suited to a main dish. I'd like more simple ideas like adding dill to steamed broccoli, etc. Do folks sautee veggies with some sort of spice? What else?

02-28-2008, 07:36 PM
Maybe I'm boring because I eat a lot of veggies just plain steamed.

One thing you can do is roast veggies in the oven, it changes their flavor incredibly. You could add garlic powder, pepper, or a variety of spices.

One thing I've been eating lately is green beans with pepper, garlic powder and onions. It is pretty good.

I could never consider veggies boring :)

02-28-2008, 07:40 PM
Have you checked the recipes section in the Vegetarian section? That may help. There is a mushroom medley with spinach recipe on here that is always a hit at my house.

Don't forget about asparagus.

We sometimes combine different veggies and stir fry them as a side dish.

Last night boobalah took some baby bok choy, cut them in half, sprinkled them with S&P and grilled them on the top of the stove. They cooked about 5 minutes. After they were done, he sprinkled them with a little bit of Balsamic vinegar. It was wonderful!

Good luck.

02-28-2008, 07:42 PM
Here's what I do:

Sautee veggies till crisp tender with garlic in olive oil (really good way to do zucchini/broccoli/green beans/etc.) You could use fresh ginger instead of the garlic too.

Carrots are good if you cook them in a little orange juice and add some spice (I like cumin! Yum!)

Baked sweet potatoes are yummy.

Sometimes I'll just serve sweet peppers sliced with a low-fat dressing to dip in.

Spinach salads are a favorite of mine when in a hurry. I also throw spinach in most anything I make.

Roasting is one of the easiest best ways to eat veggies. Just cut up various veggies in uniform sizes and roast in the oven at 400-450 degrees. Add a little olive oil (make sure to measure it~I use 1-2t) and seasoning of choice. Also, it's good to put the veggies in in stages as to how long they need to cook (root veg first, softer veg later, etc.) Leftovers are great to use in other dishes later in the week too.

02-28-2008, 08:23 PM
zenor77, what spices do you use on the roasted veggies? What veggies roast well?

02-28-2008, 08:44 PM
I'll answer some of the roasting questions. I've found carrots, brussels sprouts, cauliflower, onions, eggplant, and green beans all do well. Mushrooms roast well, but can often darken other vegetables, so they are best done in a separate dish, then tossed in at the end. I use salt, pepper, garlic, and basil usually. Although sometimes I'll use hot peppers and chili powder. Curry can be a good choice as well, but depends on what you're serving it with.

Oh, and with the salt/pepper/garlic/basil spices I often splash on a little balsamic vinegar when serving.

02-28-2008, 08:47 PM
I'm quite fussy with my veggies,
I can't eat them steamed with salt and pepper, nor do I like them boiled. I like them sauteed or in the oven.
My favourite way to eat roast vegetables is getting some...

potatos (you can leave these out)
onions cut in quarters (they can go in a bit later)

I then put some olive oil in the tray, and then i sprinkle:

mixed herbs
dried chili seeds
and lots of black pepper

I then put foil over them (aluminium) leave them in the oven for 30 minutes, and then cook them for the last 15/20 minutes uncovered. YUMMY my favourite!

Have you thought about some yummy salads? Thats a great way to get veggies in! You can make salads so pretty with loads of different vegetables mixed in, for example, celery, peppers, corn, beetroot, spinnach, rocket. You can be imaginative. I also put in seeds and I may put apples into the salad as well.

Also you can always make some soup (not too thick so its a main meal, as an appetiser) you can use so many different recipes as well. potato, leak, beans, celery, pepper, and just add whatever else you like. Its lovely in the winter and especially in the autumn (fall). All you have to do if you really want to disguise it is use a food processor. Make it totally liquidated and nobody will suspect a thing. ;)

Good luck!
Sorry my post was quite long lol but i hope it helps!

02-28-2008, 09:54 PM
Thanks for all the roasting ideas, folks! Seranab, I also love the idea of soup. I hadn't thought of that. As for salad, we aren't big on salad. We love raw veggies with dip and even some without. And, we'll eat a wide variety cooked. But, salads usually end up dripping with dressing on top of the cheese and bacon bits for us. I do make one salad that's not. I'll have to do that more often. Here's what that one is:
Marinate red onion, sliced very thin, in House Italian dressing overnight. Serve atop Romaine lettuce and top with parmesan.

02-28-2008, 10:22 PM
Check out this wonderful thread from the 100 lb club. It's loaded with delicious veggie recipes.

02-28-2008, 10:49 PM
zenor77, what spices do you use on the roasted veggies? What veggies roast well?

I've never met a veggie that didn't taste good roasted! For some reason, dry heat seems to bring out the sweetness of a lot of veggies.

All the root vegetables are great roasted (potatoes, sweet potatoes, carrots, turnips, rutabagas, parsnips, kholrabi...) Winter squash, broccoli, cauliflower, brussel sprouts, green beans, zukes (don't cook too long~mushy), asparagas, are also good too. I'd experiment and see what combos you like. I'm sure I'm missing some veggies that roast well too.

Seasoning wise, that's completely up to you. I tend to use herbs du provence (French herb blend) most often, but chili powder, curry powder, cumin, or Italian herbs would all work well too.

02-29-2008, 11:20 PM
Roasted bell peppers are awesome. I use the red ones and they're so sweet and go well in sandwiches, salads, pastas, etc. Just cut them in half, remove stems and seeds, flatten them with your hand, put them under the broiler skin side up until the skin is blackened. Remove from the oven and place in a plastic bag (to make them sweat), peel them when they're cool and store in the fridge. Mine usually last a couple of days. You don't need to put any oil or spices on them, they're so sweet and delicious.

I'm also a big fan of roasted asparagus. I usually toss approx 1 1/2 lbs of trimmed asparagus with 1 tbsp olive oil, light sprinkle kosher salt, roast at 450 for about 15-20 mins. Man, I could eat the whole thing! :D

Don't forget roasted garlic too, it's so, so good. Cut the top of the heads (I usually roast about 3 heads at the same time). Drizzle some olive oil, sprinkle of salt. Wrap them in aluminum foil, bake at 375 for about an hour, or until they turn golden brown. Let them cool and then squeeze the puree from the heads. You can keep this in the fridge and use it for hummus, spreads, mashed potatoes, ever tried mashed cauliflower insted of mashed potatoes? I rub it on meats and poultry or fish also.

Sorry, I got carried :D

02-29-2008, 11:35 PM
Roasted Fennel is also delicious. I like to roast Fennel, Mushrooms, Onion, Parsnips and Carrots. I use an olive oil mister to keep the amount very low. I add minced garlic as well and a bit of salt and pepper.

Trying new salads is great, because the mix of ingredients is endless. I like to try fruits, nuts and a variety of cheeses. Goat cheese is one of my newest favorites in a salad. It pairs well with dried cranberries, mandarin oranges, or pears. I like spring mix and baby spinach for the greens.