Make the most of fall: Just place some fresh veggies in a pan and let your oven do the work for you. Brooke Parkhurst and James Briscione, authors of Just Married & Cooking: 200 Recipes for Living, Eating, and Entertaining Together, share their step-by-step method for no-fuss roasting (and less cleaning up).
Want to whip up a fast and healthful meal? It’s as easy as chopping up some fresh veggies, tossing them with a few seasonings, and letting the oven do the rest.
So while your oven is working overtime—the superhigh temperature concentrating and creating new flavors—you might as well grab your Scrabble board and a bottle of Morellino di Scansano, because roasting is the most effective and flavorful cooking method that requires approximately zero attention.
Simple Roasting Rules
A little oil or butter helps the vegetables color.
Never forget the kosher salt and freshly ground pepper.
Try to cut all the veggies into a similar size so they cook evenly, though it’s okay to make different shapes to keep it interesting.
Cut the items to be roasted into bite-size pieces and combine in a bowl.
Season with salt, pepper, herbs, and/or spices.
Add some form of fat (oil or butter) — just enough to coat.
Spread the items in a single layer in a pan with low sides. Don’t crowd!
Get it into a hot oven. Dense, slow-cooking vegetables (think root vegetables like butternut squash) should cook at 400 to 425 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes. Tender, quick-cooking vegetables (spring and summer veggies like squash and corn) can be cooked at 400 to 450 degrees for 8 to 12 minutes. Always roast vegetables until they are tender enough to be pierced with a knife.