Once upon a time, I had all the time in the world to cook. I had time to think about what I would make, plan it out, casually do groceries, and gingerly sip on some rose (all the way) while I blasted Frank Sinatra and his friends (hey Tony! Hey Ella!) on Pandora (yes, I’m old) and chopped, prepared and cooked a meal for myself and my husband.
Then I had a kid. And a few years later, another one.
Preparing meals now is like being on some crazy ass reality TV show where the little ones are trying to overthrow the big people. If there isn’t one kid screaming at me for something and another one wrapped around my legs, trying to rugby tackle me into picking him up as I try not to drop a pot of boiling water on his head, it’s not a normal night.
At meal times, I now have one objective: to get some kind of food on the table before everyone melts down (including me), and to try to shove that food into my mouth as fast as possible (I know - I’m really selling this parenting thing).
The cookbook author in me has died a thousand deaths since becoming a mother, so I have had to simplify things. Whether you have children or not, life is busy and seems to come at you in all different directions. I’m thinking we could all use some simpler recipes to fit into our often times too busy lives.
And happily I have found that just because it’s simple doesn’t mean it’s not just as delicious.
Enter roasted vegetables. Since I’m mostly vegetarian, roasting veggies is a daily staple in my household. There isn’t a veggie I have met that has escaped my parchment paper covered baking sheet. I just slather it with a generous serving of coconut or avocado oil, and sprinkle it with just the right amount of Himalayan pink sea salt. Most days, you’ll find me standing at the stove, eating veggies off the pan.
But for the times when I can actually make it to the table, this bowl of goodness is a crowd pleaser. The sweetness of the sweet potatoes and the chewiness of the dates, the crunch of the Brussels sprouts and walnuts, and the salty yet soft texture of the browned cauliflower comes together like a symphony of goodness in your mouth.
- Cook Time
- Prep Time
For the Veggies
- 2 white sweet potatoes, skin on, cut in ½ inch cubes
- 1 large head of cauliflower, cored and roughly cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 pound of Brussels Sprouts, halved with some leaves peeled off to turn into crisps
- ¼ cup raw walnuts, roughly chopped
- 2 dates, pitted and sliced
- Avocado or coconut oil for the veggies
- Himalayan pink sea salt for the veggies
For the Honey Drizzle (Optional)
- 1 tbsp EVOO (extra virgin olive oil)
- 1 tsp raw honey
- ¼ tsp Himalayan pink sea salt
Preheat oven to 375F.
1. Place your cut up sweet potatoes and cauliflower on two parchment paper lined baking trays. The Brussels Sprouts will take less time than the sweet potatoes and cauliflower, so you’ll roast those later, or else if you have three shelves in your oven, you can roast them at the same time.
2. Cover the veggies with either melted coconut oil or avocado oil, and sprinkle with salt to your tasting (I prefer my things on the saltier side so I tend to put more than the average person). Spread them out in an even layer, and roast for 40 minutes, turning the pans and rotating shelves half way through. If the veggies aren’t browned after 40 minutes, keep roasting them until they are. Sometimes this can take up to 55 minutes, depending on how hot your oven is.
3. Once the cauliflower and sweet potatoes are ready, roast your Brussels Sprouts at the same temperature. You can save yourself a step by simply removing the veggies from one of your trays and using the same piece of parchment paper to roast your Brussels Sprouts. Just cover them in the oil of your choice along with some salt, toss to coat, spread in an even layer, and roast for 15 minutes or until some of the leaves begin to get brown and crispy.
4. While the Brussels Sprouts cook, make your honey drizzle (if using) by combining the EVOO, honey and salt in a small bowl and mixing until combined.
5. Once the veggies are all ready, it’s time to plate! Grab your favorite bowl and place the desired amount of veggies in each bowl. You can either serve it family style in one big serving bowl, or else make up individual bowls for you and your dinner guests. Either way, pile your veggies on top of one another and sprinkle them with your chopped dates and walnuts. Drizzle the honey and oil over the top of the veggies and enjoy!