Sunday vegetable plate
Clockwise from left: Roasted root vegetables with black olive “persillade”;
Spring greens with garlic, chiles and lemon
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Broccoli rabe is one of my favorite spring vegetables. It has a nutty and pleasantly bitter taste that reminds me of spring as no other vegetable can. Its assertiveness demands strong flavors like garlic, chiles and lemon, all of which make their appearance in tonight’s dinner. If unavailable, use regular broccoli or other greens such as Swiss chard, kale or turnip greens.
Jerusalem artichokes, also known as sunchokes, are a species of sunflower native to the eastern United States. Although considered by some to be an invasive weed, they are grown primarily for their tubers which taste like potatoes when left raw but develop a delicate, sweet flavor faintly reminiscent of chestnuts when cooked.
1 yellow carrot, peeled and sliced on a bias
1 gold carrot, peeled and sliced on a bias
5 medium spring turnips, peeled and trimmed
3 Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and chopped coarsely
1 t. fresh sage leaves
2 T. oil-cured olives, pitted and chopped
4 cloves garlic, peeled (mince 1 clove and chop the rest coarsely)
juice of 1 lemon
1 ancho chile, seeds removed and crushed
broccoli rabe, trimmed and chopped
mustard greens, trimmed and chopped
For the roasted root vegetables:
Make sure that the root vegetables are all cut into approximately the same size. This ensures that the vegetables will cook evenly. Combine in a roasting pan with a generous pinch of salt, sage leaves and 2 tablespoons olive oil. Toss. Roast in a 375 F oven for 30 minutes. Meanwhile combine in a ramekin olives, half of the lemon juice, 1 T. extra-virgin olive oil, minced garlic and chopped parsley. Stir and set aside to let flavors develop. When root vegetables are done, remove from the oven. Stir in “persillade”; toss gently. Sprinkle with some chopped parsley and serve at once.
For the spring greens:
In a wide skillet or Dutch oven, gently heat 3 T. olive oil over medium heat. Add coarsely chopped garlic and ancho chile when hot. Stir. When the garlic takes on a little color, after roughly 20 to 30 seconds, add the greens. Immediately season with salt. Add a little water if the greens seem too dry. Cook until greens are tender, anywhere from 5 to 10 minutes depending on toughness. Taste for salt when the greens are done. Drizzle with some extra-virgin olive oil and stir in the remaining lemon juice, then serve at once.
Time: One hour, including prep. Individually the recipes should take no more than 30 minutes, each.