I’ve heard so many people say it, and I just don’t understand it. I can understand not liking certain vegetables; no matter what you do to celery, I don’t really want to eat it. In fact, the smell makes me gag. But to say that there is not any vegetable on God’s green earth, no matter how it is prepared, that you enjoy — that I find just a little preposterous. I feel that what you are saying is that none of the vegetables you ate growing up were very well prepared. That is sad indeed, but fixable! Growing up, I didn’t like carrots unless they were prepared with a good pot roast; but now that I am an adult, I know how healthy they are, so I’ve tried to find ways to prepare them that taste good to me. And since that seems to be what May over at Good Girl Lit is trying to do, I thought I’d round up some vegetable preparation recipes and ideas to encourage y’all to eat your vegetables! Feel free to contribute your own.
All sorts of different veggies are good on pizza, as I reinforced with my first and second rounds of Make-Do-With-Whatcha-Got Pizza. The key, I find, is experimentation. So many yummy things can go on a pizza crust!
I think the key to finding veggies you like is trying them lots of different ways. When it comes to good ol’ southern black-eyed peas (or any of the other varieties), I don’t want ’em unless they’re fresh or were fresh-frozen at home; but I really love canned English peas, drained and microwaved with a little butter and marjoram. I also like to open a can of lima beans, drain them, and add chopped bacon or ham and microwave them, and then stir in crumbled feta cheese.
Stir-fry is always a great way to prepare veggies, since it’s a quick cooking method that retains lots of the nutrients. I buy bags of pre-cut frozen stir-fry veggies when they’re on sale and then usually add things like canned mushrooms, water chestnuts, baby corn, or bamboo shoots. Sometimes I add sliced tofu or chicken or beef, and I usually serve it over rice or ramen.
If you like Thai food, one of my most popular recipes is Thai Peanut Chicken Stir-Fry, which can be modified to include all sorts of veggies. I don’t make it as often now that I have a housemate with a peanut allergy, but it’s usually a big hit — I can only think of two friends who don’t like it.
I also LOVE SPINACH.
My uncle loves cooking Brussels sprouts with leeks. He steams the Brussels sprouts until tender; while they’re steaming, he slices a leek into rounds and sautées it in butter (or bacon fat) ’til it’s soft. He then drains and halves the sprouts and adds them to the pan, and cooks it all until the sprouts start to brown. SO tasty. I’m getting hungry just thinking about it.
Growing up, we ate a lot of steamed broccoli, since my dad LOVES broccoli. I got much more excited, though, when my dad sliced up a big yellow onion and several yellow summer squash and sautéed them in butter and lemon pepper until soft. YUM!
I also like to drain a can of green beans (any cut), douse them with soy sauce and heat them in a saucepan with chopped walnuts, and then stir in parmesan cheese right before serving.
I could go on and on with other recipes and ideas, but I think you get my point. I always say, “I’ll try anything twice!” because maybe the first time I tried it was a fluke. And I also maintain that if you think you don’t like any vegetable at all, well, you’re just not trying. Come on over to my house and we’ll find one you like. :o)