I hope it’s not a faux-pas to blog about too many takes on roasted veggies. Is anyone keeping track, though? But I cannot help it, not only the weather is perfect for turning the oven on, but roasted veggies go well with pretty much any main dish, from beef to seafood, and if you like to go vegetarian, they can be the star of the show. I saw this recipe featured in a PBS cooking show that is new to me, Pati’s Mexican Table. Like Marcela Valladolid, Pati cooks Mexican food, but with a more down to earth demeanor. She has an adorable accent, and that friendly aura that captivates the viewer right away. Anyway, this is such a simple recipe, you can memorize it in a second (quiz to follow) : equal parts of orange juice, lime juice, and olive oil. Salt and pepper. You are done. Then, there’s the Cotija dressing, but no quiz on that one, because I am a kind teacher, and want you to get an A+.
ROASTED BROCCOLI AND CAULIFLOWER WITH QUESO COTIJA DRESSING
(adapted from Pati’s Mexican Table)
for the veggies:
1/4 cup freshly squeezed lime juice
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup olive oil plus more for brushing
salt and pepper to taste
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 medium head of broccoli cut into 1/4″ vertical slices
1 medium head of cauliflower cut into 1/4″ vertical slices
for the dressing:
1/2 cup crumbled queso Cotija
1/2 cup Mexican crema
1/4 cup vegetable oil
1 teaspoons sherry vinegar
2 tablespoons water
salt and pepper to taste
Heat oven to 475 degrees F.
Mix the lime juice, orange juice, olive oil, salt and freshly ground black pepper in a small bowl. Whisk very well to combine.
Brush 2 large baking sheets with olive oil. Place the broccoli and cauliflower on each baking sheet, making sure that it is well spread out and not crowded. Evenly pour the orange juice mixture all over the vegetables. Place in the oven and bake for 25 to 30 minutes, flipping once in between, until well roasted and considerably charred. Remove from the oven.
While the veggies are roasting, combine in the jar of a blender the queso cotija, Mexican crema, vegetable oil, sherry vinegar, water, salt and pepper. Blend until smooth, adjust with water if desired.
Serve the broccoli and cauliflower and ladle the queso cotija right on top, or pass the sauce at the table so that everyone can add as much as they want.
to print the recipe, click here
Comments: What made me want to try this recipe was the unusual way to slice the veggies. Vertically, including the stems. Essentially no waste, and they look so cute laying flat on the baking sheet. That also gives a nice amount of char all over, which means a ton of flavor. The citric component gets intensified by reduction, the veggies tender but still retaining some bite. The Cotija dressing is super flavorful. The recipe makes more than needed for a light drizzle all over the veggies. Leftover keeps quite well in the fridge and next day you can drizzle over avocados, tomatoes, or even some grilled meat.
Speaking of grilled meat, we paired these saucy grilled veggies with grilled pork tenderloin, for a delicious, quick and easy dinner.
Life is good…
and now for the quiz. What do we add to the veggies before roasting them at 475 F?
Note to self: adapt this recipe for the steam-roasting technique from Fine Cooking. Maybe using just the florets will work better in that case. Worth playing with, that’s for sure.
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