During CSA season, when organic, locally grown vegetables are delivered to our door weekly, we enjoy a lot of simple, anti-inflammatory meals that come together quickly and easily. We pair vegetable side dishes with pan-cooked or grilled fish, meat, or veggie burgers for super-fast, super-healthy weeknight meals bursting with fresh flavors and beneficial micronutrients. Here are three of our favorite cooked vegetable sides to celebrate the flavors of summer.
Crisp & Creamy Potato Wedges with Lemon-Oregano Gremolata
Steaming potatoes before roasting them creates a wedge that’s crispy on the outside and creamy like mashed potatoes on the inside; it also cuts down on overall cooking time, for a friendlier weeknight dish. You can roast the potato wedges in the oven at 425 F for about 20 minutes (flipping them halfway through cooking time), or, if you’d prefer to avoid turning on the oven in the summer heat, pan roast them in a large skillet.
6 to 8 small, Yukon Gold potatoes
2 Tbsp olive oil
sprinkle of salt
1/2 tsp kosher salt
1 clove fresh garlic
zest of 1 lemon
1/4 cup loosely packed, fresh oregano leaves
Scrub the potato skins and then cut potatoes into wedges. Pile the wedges in a microwave-safe bowl and cook on high for 6 minutes, or until potatoes are tender when pierced with a fork. Set the potatoes aside for a few minutes to cool slightly. Meanwhile, heat a large skillet over medium heat. Add olive oil and a little salt to the potatoes in the bowl, and toss to coat. Lay out the potato wedges in a single layer on the hot skillet, cut side down. (If you don’t hear a loud sizzle when you lay out the potato wedges, then the pan is not hot enough yet.) Cook until golden brown, about 5-6 minutes, then flip each wedge and cook on the other cut side until golden brown and crispy.
While the potatoes are cooking, mince together the kosher salt, garlic clove, lemon zest, and fresh oregano with a sharp chef’s knife. Toss the hot potatoes and gremolata together in a small bowl, and serve immediately. Serves 2-4.
Warm Sweet Beet & Spicy Arugula Salad
This warm salad combines sweet beets and spicy arugula for a perfectly balanced side dish rich in micronutrients and anti-inflammatory compounds.
5 to 6 small beets, scrubbed and cut into bite-sized pieces
2 sprigs fresh rosemary
2 Tbsp olive oil
1/3 cup Madeira
salt and pepper to taste
10 oz. fresh arugula
Bring the beets, rosemary, olive oil, Madeira, salt, and pepper to a simmer over medium-high heat. Lower heat and simmer for 20 minutes, covered, until tender. Uncover the pan and continue cooking until most of the liquid has cooked off. Set the beets aside in a bowl. Toss the fresh arugula into the same pan with the remaining glaze. Cook, stirring, until arugula is wilted, about 1 minute. Serve the beets on a bed of the wilted arugula. Serves 2-4.
Simple Roasted Broccoli
You can season roasted broccoli with any favorite spice or herb blend, but I think garden-fresh broccoli tastes amazing roasted simply, with just a bit of olive oil and salt. Cut up one head of broccoli into florets, then peel and chop the stem. Toss with 1-2 Tbsp olive oil and 1 tsp kosher salt. Spread out the broccoli in a single layer on a parchment-lined baking sheet, and roast at 425 F for 20 minutes, until tender and toasty, turning halfway through cooking as necessary. Serve hot. Serves 2-4.