Vegetables are the workhorses of our kitchens, carrying the burden of filling the plates while a small piece of meat gets all the glory. Usually shunted off to the side of the plate, they rarely get to shine in their own right.
One of the issues can be is that while we all know we should eat our veggies, we run out of ideas for different ways to prepare them. Here are some ideas that entail a little, but not a lot, of work to jazz up the vegetable dishes that come out of your kitchen.
This one recipe makes both the main course and the side salad! Nice chewy French or Italian bread works well for this. Toast bread wouldn’t cut it.
This is a very colourful, and tasty vegetable side dish, and very easy to prepare, with a flair of a traditional French to it with the braised lettuce. Cooking lettuce might seem a jarring idea, but the French do cook lettuce as well as eating it fresh.
A sophisticated but really easy vegetable side dish. If you end up liking it, you’ll have it easily committed to memory in no time flat.
How many this recipe serves depends on how many leeks you have or buy, which will of course depend on how many you are planning on feeding.
This is a very hearty vegetable side dish, with the right amount of melted cheese and crispy bits to give it a big comfort food factor.
This is a side-dish that you can make entirely in the microwave, making it ideal for times when your stove is already full-out committed — or just for times when you don’t want any pots or pans wash-up.
This Butterscotch Bean recipe is an usually tasty recipe for Lima Beans, rather than being for the variety of bean called Butterscotch Bean. It’s very good, as you can imagine just by looking at the ingredients, but it’s very rich.
This is a very hearty vegetable side dish that has everything going for it comfort-food wise: a cheese sauce, bacon, and even buttered bread crumbs on top. You can even make this ahead.
This is a creamy purée of cauliflower enriched with cream and butter, and seasoned with nutmeg. It makes for a very nice side splodge on your plate.
Tinned cream corn suits most people just fine, but every once in a while it’s nice to make it from scratch. It’s an easy side dish, and easily presentable to guests when you have made it yourself.
For many people, a creamed spinach dish is often pivotal in getting them to give spinach another chance, after a childhood of being served boiled spinach out of a can.
A really tasty way to enjoy cauliflower, and it’s not that much work. If you’re not in the habit of keeping all the spices required, you can just use a mild curry powder instead in roughly the same quantities.
If your eyes popped at the thought of this, imagine your friends. This dish is served at some bbq places and state fairs in the American south.
Some baked onion recipes seem to think you have an army of sous-chefs to back you. This recipe will taste just as impressive.
A classic North American 1950s dish to make and take to feed a crowd at gatherings. It was dubbed Funeral Beans because it was a stand-by crowd-pleaser for gatherings after funerals.
For green beans, you can use whatever you call green beans: Runner Beans, Wax Beans, French Beans, Green Beans, etc.
A slow cooker recipe for very delicious, tasty, deep-brown baked beans with a thick hearty sauce. The recipe really only requires about 20 minutes of attention from you at various intervals.
This is a savoury cheese and tomato bread pudding from the Beatrix Potter cookbook. The custardy texture of the bread, with the melted cheese, and tomatoes and basil, makes this a very morish, comfort-food dish that people are sure to reach for seconds of, yet it costs very little to make
Most stuffed pepper recipes take hours just to make the filling; these you can have in the oven in under 15 minutes.
As stuffed, roasted peppers go, this is one of the easier recipes, and the ricotta cheese stuffing makes for a nice change from the usual stuffing of rice. Plus this is a rare, healthy stuffed pepper recipe: it’s low-fat, low-sodium, low-carb.
This is a creamy, spicy, rich-tasting, very morish eggplant sauce. It’s great on rice, noodles (try it on Shirataki noodles for a super low-cal meal), or just in a bowl with a spoon, maybe with a sprinkle of parmesan on it, it’s that good on its own.
You’re on your own for proportions. Basically, cook up as many frozen carrots as you figure you want to serve per person.
This is dead easy, but it does need to be done at the last minute so it can be served hot from the pan.
And you thought boiled, sliced carrots were another word for boring? Not these ones: very good, very sweet, even the older ones that have been stored a few months.