Roasting vegetables is the easiest and most delicious way to whip together a vegetable side dish. One of my favorites is asparagus. Asparagus is sold in bunches and one bunch is usually enough for 2-3 people.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Snap the tough ends off each stalk (it’s usually about an inch or two) and put them on a sheet pan. Drizzle the asparagus with about a tablespoon of olive oil, one teaspoon of kosher salt, and a half teaspoon of black pepper. Mix it all up with your hands and arrange so that the stalks are flat on the pan.
I like to serve it with pancetta or prosciutto on top, but you can leave it off if you don’t like that. I broke up two slices of thinly sliced pancetta and spread it on top.
Roast at 400 degrees for about 15 minutes (20 if it’s REALLY thick asparagus). If you’re leaving off the meat, put some shredded Parmesan on for the last 2-3 minutes. Mmmmmhmmm.
If you’re new to asparagus, get ready for some SMELLY pee. Asparagus has an enzyme called mercaptan and when you digest it, there is a smelly byproduct that comes out in your urine. It’s all worth it because roasted asparagus is full of folic acid, low-calorie and delicious.
Summer means corn and corn means crap in your teeth. And delicious side dishes.
Barefoot Contessa’s confetti corn is so easy and delicious and makes eating corn a lot more enjoyable (no need for dental floss!).
- 2 tablespoons olive oil
- 1/2 cup chopped red onion
- 1 small orange bell pepper, 1/2-inch diced
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
- Kernels cut from 5 ears yellow or white corn (4 cups)
- 1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
- 2 tablespoons julienned fresh basil, minced fresh chives, and minced fresh parsley leaves
Hello, corn! I took the husks off but left the nubbin holder things because it’s easier to take the corn off that way. Please use fresh corn. When I was young my dad made me eat canned peas and corn on a regular basis and it scared me away from vegetables for nearly over 15 years. No hard feelings, Dad.
When you’re in the store selecting corn, peel back the husk and silk on the end and look for whole, happy kernels.
You want this:
Now this ear of corn is really fine. The shriveled up kernels were only at the very tip so it’s no big deal. But if you peel back the husks and you see lots of dried up shriveled kernels, throw that sucker back!
To get the corn off the ear, stand it up over a large cutting board or in a large bowl, and hold it by the corn nipple. Run a sharp knife down each side like so:
Next cut up your onion and pepper. Discard the stem, ribs, and seeds from the pepper before cutting.
Heat the oil in a large saute pan and cook the onion over medium heat for five minutes. Add the bell pepper and cook for another two minutes. Add the butter and let it melt before adding the corn, salt, and pepper. Cook for five to seven minutes until the corn is just cooked.
Transfer everything to a bowl and stir in the herbs. Use as much or as little as you want. I like a lot! I prepared this ahead of time to bring to a bbq at my parents’ house so I didn’t add the herbs until I served it. It should look as bright and beautiful as it does in the cookbook: