Over the weekend we purchased the most beautiful golden and red beets at the farmers market. I love roasting them and marinating them in balsamic and rice wine vinegar so they are ready to add to salads and sides throughout the week. When I roast beets I cut off the tops and cut them in half if they are huge (ideally you would like to leave them whole to roast). I rinse them off and put them in a foil purse with olive oil, coarse sea salt and pepper.
I throw them in a 400 degree oven and go about my business. They are done when you start to smell them and they are fork tender. Once they are cool the peel of the beet slides right off, exposing the most gorgeous and flavorful beet you will ever have.
So here I am with the oven blazing at 400 degrees in the middle of one of the hottest days all summer…I decide to get the most out of the experience. I went through the fridge and pulled out everything that was roast worthy and went for it. I had some tired Poblano peppers that would have probably gone into the garbage, a head of garlic and a worship-worthy carton of small heirloom tomatoes, getting a bit too soft. So, I roasted things like it was my new vocation. The aromas coming from our kitchen were straight from Sicily.
The roasted foods just kept on giving. Once they were done, I had an amazing array of succulent ingredients to choose from, here is the bounty:
I chopped the beets and marinated them for options all week. I used the roasted garlic as my secret weapon in the hummus I was starting to make. I blended the most amazing spicy marinara from the roasted tomatoes, Poblanos and garlic (more on that dish this week). I also made a roasted garlic bread to go with our pasta bake. Sandy said it was one of the best meals I have ever made. It all came together because I threw a few more things in the oven with the beets to conserve time and energy. It took so little and gave so much!
It has been my experience so far that in this vegan life, planning ahead is the key. It is the key to being nourished and satisfied and prepared when life is whizzing by as it always does. Our lives haven’t stopped or slowed down to accommodate our desire to revamp our entire diet, ethical beliefs and lifestyle. When we are short on time, exhausted and starving, it feels impossible to figure out a balanced way to consume our protein, grains,veggies….yadda yadda. I am going to grab a bottle of red wine and a bag of chips and call it a night. This is when the already chopped veggies, prepared beets, grains and beans that are waiting for us help quickly and easily feed our bodies and our minds.
Lets set ourselves up for success and give ourselves the opportunity to be wonderful at revamping our diets and changing our lives one meal at a time.
Have a delicious day.