As the produce delivery season winds down, I’ve found myself relying more and more on my standby cooking strategies for using up large quantities of produce at once. One is stir frying. The other is roasting, and that’s exactly how this roasted vegetable dish came about.
Typically I spend most of my time and energy seasoning my roasted vegetables up front. That way, there’s not much to do when the veggies come out of the oven and leftovers are ready to go without any doctoring. But in this case, I was only roasting the vegetables for one meal (no leftovers) and planned to top them with eggs to make a complete meal. To tie it all together, I decided I wanted to make a sauce.
At first, I was just thinking about a sweet and sour sauce like honey mustard, but with maple syrup standing in for the honey. However, when the maple taste proved to be a little too strong, I punched up the sauce with a squirt of sriracha. Dashes of vinegar and fish sauce round out the flavors. The result is a sweetish sauce with a nice heat to it. I’m not sure the sauce would be balanced without the sriracha, though, so if you don’t want a spicy dish you may want to skip it altogether.
A word on the fat in this recipe: I happened to have some bacon fat I saved from a “breakfast for dinner” meal which added a nice savory smokiness to the roasted vegetables. If you don’t have or want to use bacon fat but still want a smoky flavor, try replacing some of the olive oil with toasted sesame oil or adding a little smoked paprika.
You can serve these vegetables as a side dish (as given in the recipe below) or increase the serving size and use it as a sort of hash underneath a runny egg for a savory breakfast or dinner.
- 1 lb red-skinned potatoes, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 2 small sweet potatoes, about 12 oz, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1/2 lb Brussels sprouts, halved
- 1 apple, diced into 1/2-inch pieces
- 1 large onion, halved and cut into 1/4-inch slices
- 2 cloves garlic, crushed
- 1 tsp dried thyme
- Salt and pepper to taste
- 2 tbsp bacon grease or olive oil
- 2 tbsp pure maple syrup
- 2 tbsp Dijon mustard
- 1 tsp apple cider vinegar
- 1/2 tsp fish sauce
- 1/4 tsp sriracha or more to taste
- Black pepper to taste (I used peppered mustard and skipped this)
- Preheat the oven to 400F.
- Divide the potatoes, sweet potatoes, Brussels sprouts, onion, apple and garlic between two sheet pans. Sprinkle with salt, pepper and thyme. Melt the bacon grease if using, and drizzle 1 tbsp bacon grease or olive oil over each tray. Toss to coat.
- Roast the vegetables until tender, 30-40 minutes, tossing after 20 minutes.
- Meanwhile, whisk together the ingredients for the sauce in a small saucepan. Taste and adjust until you're happy with the balance. Then, heat the pan over medium, stirring frequently, until bubbling and slightly thickened. Remove from the heat and set aside.
- When the vegetables are done roasting, either toss them with the sauce or drizzle it over top. Serve.