Thai Watermelon Salad

3 cloves garlic, finely minced
2 tablespoons packed light palm sugar or brown sugar
3 tablespoons fish sauce
1/4 cup (60 ml) fresh lime juice
2 Thai or Serrano chiles, minced with seeds intact for fun
1 tablespoon finely chopped kaffir lime leaf (remove the midrib)
1/3 cup (90 ml) dried shrimp, briefly rinsed to soften and finely chopped
1/2 cup (120ml) roasted, unsalted peanuts, chopped
A volleyball-size seedless watermelo

For the dressing, combine the garlic, sugar, fish sauce, and lime juice in a bowl, stirring to dissolve the sugar. Add the lime leaf, dried shrimp, and peanuts. Set aside for 15 minutes, then revisit the dressing for a taste test. Add extra lime juice, sugar, or fish sauce as needed to balance the flavors. Set aside or refrigerate for up to 3 days; return to room temperature before using.

Cut the watermelon into 1-inch (2.5 cm) cubes. Pile them into individual bowls, on a dramatic platter or in a shallow bowl. Top with the dressing and serve.

Vietnames Pomelo Salad (Goi Buoi Tom Thit)

1/2 teaspoon salt
8 ounces (240 g) large shrimp, peeled and deveined
4 ounces (120 g) boneless skinless chicken breast or boneless pork chop
1 medium pomelo, or 1/2 large pomelo
1 carrot, peeled and cut into fine shreds
1/4 cup mint leaves, chopped
2 tablespoons chopped cilantro, leafy tops only
1/4 cup chopped unsalted, roasted peanuts
2 tablespoons Crispy Caramelized Shallot (hanh phi, optional)

Dressing

2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon water
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
1 small clove garlic, finely chopped and mashed, or put through a press
1 red Thai chile or 1/2 Fresno chile, chopped

Put the salt in a small saucepan and fill 2/3 with water. Bring to a boil and then add the shrimp. As soon as they’ve curled up, remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool.

Return the water to a boil and add the chicken or pork chop. When bubbles form at the rim, turn off the heat, cover and let sit for 20 minutes to cook the flesh. Remove and set aside to cool. (If you’re using the Vietnamese sausage, skip this step because it’s already cooked.)

Cut the shrimp in the diagonal into large pieces that will blend well with the pomelo and other ingredients. Hand shred the chicken or cut the pork into julienne. Set aside.

If the pomelo is big, halve it lengthwise and save one half for another day. Cut off the ends of the pomelo, then cut off the skin and pith to reveal the pinkish flesh underneath. Pry the pomelo open and split into two parts. Use your fingers and as needed, a knife and scissors, to peel away the flesh from the skin. Work segment by segment, and separate the flesh into bite-size pieces. Deposit the flesh in a bowl as you work.

5. For the dressing, combine fish sauce, lime juice, water, sugar, garlic and chile in a small bowl. Stir to dissolve the sugar.

6. Right before serving, add the shrimp, chicken (or pork), carrot, mint, cilantro, peanuts and fried shallot to the pomelo. Toss with your fingers or tongs to combine well. Add the dressing and toss. Taste and adjust the flavors, as needed. Transfer to a plate or shallow bowl, leaving any liquid behind and serve.

Vietnamese Grapefruit Salad (Goi Buoi)

1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
8 ounces large shrimp, peeled and deveined
1 medium oroblanco grapefruit
2 tablespoons fish sauce
1 1/2 tablespoon fresh lime juice
1 tablespoon water
1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 to 1 teaspoon chile garlic sauce, homemade or storebought
2 to 3 tablespoons coarsely grated carrot (use the largest hole on a box grater)
1/2 to 3/4 cup thinly sliced red and/or green cabbage
1/3 cup chopped or hand-torn mint leaves
1/4 cup chopped unsalted, roasted peanuts
2 tablespoons purchased fried onions or homemade Crispy Caramelized Shallot (hanh phi, optional)

Put the salt in a small saucepan and fill 2/3 with water. Bring to a boil and then add the shrimp. As soon as they’ve curled up, remove them with a slotted spoon and set aside to cool.
Cut the shrimp in the diagonal into large pieces that will blend well with the grapefruit and other ingredients. Set aside.

Peel the oroblanco, separate in half. Working on one segment at a time, use a paring knife to help you remove the skin to reveal the supreme. When done with the entire grapefruit, separate each supreme into its vesicles (they’ll come apart as singles or small clusters). Let your fingertips do the separation and allow the vesicles drop into a bowl as you work. Cover and refrigerate up to 4 hours, if not using right away.

For the dressing, combine fish sauce, lime juice, water, sugar, garlic and chile in a small bowl. Stir to dissolve the sugar.
Right before serving, add the shrimp, carrot, cabbage, mint, peanuts and fried onions (or shallot) to the grapefruit. Gently toss with your fingers. Add the dressing and gently combine. Taste and adjust the flavors, as needed. Transfer to a plate or shallow bowl, leaving any liquid behind and serve.

Thai Cucumber Salad (Ajat)

1/3 cup vinegar
1 cup sugar
2 teaspoons salt
1 cup cucumber, sliced
1 tablespoon fresh Thai chili peppers, chopped
1/3 cup roasted peanuts, ground
2 tablespoons fresh coriander leaves for garnish

In a small mixing bowl, combine vinegar, sugar and salt. Mix very well until sugar and salt are dissolved.

Add cucumber, ground peanut and hot pepper.

Mix well.

Top with coriander leaves.

Issan Pork Salad (Yum Mu Issan)

1 Pound Pork Steak or Similar Cut of meat
1 Cup Fresh Thai chile peppers
1/4 Cup Tamarind Sauce (50% concentrate 50% water)
1/4 Cup Fish Sauce
1 Cup Onions, Thinly Sliced
2 Tablespoons Freshly Grated Ginger
1/2 Cup Chopped Coriander Leaves

Barbeque or grill the meat to the desired degree of done-ness.

Roast the chilis in a moderate oven (or grill them), until the skin begins to change color. Grind the chilis to a pulp and add equal parts of tamarind sauce and fish sauce until the whole forms a slightly fluid paste.

Cut the pork diagonally across the grain into eigth inch thick slices, and cut the slices into 1″ long pieces and then toss with the sauce and allow to marinade for about 24 hours. Add the onions and ginger and coriander leaves.

Toss (as a salad is tossed) and serve on a bed of lettuce with a bowl of sticky rice or Thai jasmine rice.

Ayam Jeruk (Balinese Chicken Salad with Toasted Coconut

1 1/2 bone-in, skin-on chicken breasts
2 3/4 cups canola oil
1 coconut, cracked open and shredded
12 small Asian shallots or 4 medium regular shallots, thinly sliced
1/4 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 tsp. whole black peppercorns
1/4 tsp. whole corainder
1 Balinese long pepper (optional)
2 tsp. ground tumeric
16 cloves garlic, peeled
3 candlenuts or unsalted macadamia nuts
1 (1/2″) piece galangal, peeled and thinly sliced
2/3 cup coconut milk, preferably UHT from a carton
1/2 tsp. Indonesian shrimp paste
5 small red Thai chiles, stemmed
1 Holland chile, stemmed
Kosher salt, to taste
4 fresh or frozen Kaffir lime leaves, thinly sliced
Juice of 1 lime
Cooked white rice, for serving

Heat a charcoal grill or set a gas grill to medium-high. (Alternatively, heat a cast-iron grill pan over medium-high.) Rub chicken with 2 tbsp. oil; grill, flipping once, until cooked through, 40–45 minutes. Let cool, then discard bones; finely shred meat and skin. Transfer to a bowl.

Heat a 12″ nonstick skillet over medium-high heat. Cook coconut until golden, 12–15 minutes; add to chicken. Add 2 cups oil and 3?4 of the shallots to pan; heat over medium. Cook, stirring occasionally, until shallots are golden brown and crisp, 10–12 minutes. Using a slotted spoon, transfer shallots to paper towels to drain; set aside. Discard oil.

Grind nutmeg, peppercorns, coriander, and long pepper, if using, in a spice grinder into a powder; transfer to a small food processor.

Add turmeric, half the garlic, the candlenuts, galangal, and 3 tbsp. water; purée into a smooth paste.

Add 2 tbsp. oil to pan; heat over medium-high. Cook paste until fragrant, 2–3 minutes. Transfer to bowl with chicken. Add coconut milk to pan; simmer over medium heat until reduced by half, 2 minutes. Let cool; add to chicken mixture.

Add remaining shallots and garlic, the paste, chiles, and salt to food processor; purée into a smooth paste. Heat remaining oil in a 10? skillet over medium-high heat; fry paste until golden, 6–7 minutes. Let cool; add to chicken mixture.

Stir in half the fried shallots, the lime leaves, and juice; garnish with remaining shallots. Serve with rice.

Thai Zucchini and Carrot Salad

1/4 cup fresh lime juice
2 tbsp. fish sauce
1 tbsp. vegetable oil
2 tsp. packed light brown sugar
1 clove garlic, minced
1 red Thai chile, minced
3 large zucchini, julienned
1 large carrot, julienned
1/4 cup packed cilantro leaves
1/4 cup packed mint leaves
1/4 cup unsalted, dry roasted peanuts, coarsely chopped

In a large bowl, whisk the lime juice with the fish sauce, oil, sugar, garlic, and chile. Add the zucchini, carrot, cilantro, mint, and peanuts, and toss to combine. Transfer the salad to a bowl to serve.

Burmese Tomato Salad

250 grams tomatoes (approx. 2-3 medium), cut into bite size chunks
1 shallot, medium, thinly sliced
20 grams garlic, peeled
5 grams green chilis (Thai bird chilis), roughly chopped
15 grams roasted peanuts (Planters work just fine), coarsely crushed. Choose your weapon to crush: mortar and pestle, rolling pin, can of soup.
1-2 kaffir lime leaves, finely sliced into hair-like shreds
1 handful cilantro, leaves and stems, chopped
1/2 tablespoon chickpea flour (also called gram flour or besan), toasted. Easily found in Indian stores, Asian stores, or other specialty stores.
2 tablespoons “tep say an lien” or crisp-fried, seasoned tiny shrimp (easily found in Asian stores in the ready to eat snacks aisle)
1 tablespoon peanut oil or vegetable oil
pinches kosher salt to taste

Begin by toasting 1/2 a cup of chickpea flour in a cast iron pan or skillet set on medium heat. Keep stirring every 2 minutes or so. At the 7-8 minute mark, it’ll start to change color and your nose will start to pick up a wonderful, nutty aroma. At this point, stir every 30 seconds or so for an additional 3-4 minutes, until it resembles the color of finely powdered graham crackers. Remove pan off the heat and let cool. Store in an airtight container and use any extra in Burmese-style vegetable salads or as a thickener/base in soups and curries.

Next, put garlic and green chilis in a blender and pulse a couple of times to get a chunky mix with easily distinguishable pieces of garlic and chili; at no point should it become a paste.

Heat a tablespoon of oil in a small wok and cook the garlic-chili blend in it until it turns an even golden brown.
Carefully remove the fried garlic-chili blend gently pressing against the side of the wok as you do, so as to leave most of the oil in the wok. Wait for the wok to cool down a bit.

Next, add a 1/2 tablespoon of toasted chickpea flour into the residual oil in the wok and stir it in to instantly form an emulsified dressing of sort. Follow with tomatoes, shallot, kaffir lime leaves, and cilantro and give it a good mix. At this point, you can stick it into the refrigerator for a couple of hours until ready to eat.

This salad can be enjoyed at room temperature or cold. Remember to salt only when ready to eat. After salting, garnish with fried garlic-chili blend, crushed peanuts, and crisp-fried dried shrimp.

Lao Soop Pak

1 C Chinese cabbage, cut in small, loose leaf pieces 7 cm (2 – 3in)
1 C cauliflower flowerets (or other white vegetable)
3 fingers sized amount of bamboo shoots, pre-cooked, finely sliced (optional)
3 long beans, cut into 4 cm (1½ in) pieces (or 10 green beans)
1 bunch sawtooth herb, three fingers-width, tailed and cut in half (or coriander leaves)
1/2 – 1 C collard greens (or bok choi ), cut in 4 cm (1½ in) pieces
2 – 3 stems dill, cut into 4 cm (1½ in) lengths
2 very large or 4 medium oyster mushrooms, torn in 1 – 2 cm (½ in) wide shreds
1 large bowlful water with 1 teaspoon of salt for refreshing vegetables
1/2 large head garlic, strung on toothpicks or satay sticks for grilling
3 or more red chillies (amount to taste or omit), strung on toothpicks for grilling
2 thin slices galangal or ginger
2 T to 1/3 C sesame seeds, dry roasted. A mixture of white and black seeds is desirable, although white alone is fine.
2 T soy sauce, padek or fish sauce (or to taste)
8 C water

Method

Prepare the vegetables as described, placing the readied ones in a large bowl. Add water and 1 teaspoon of salt. Rinse vegetables in the brine, picking off any wilting pieces. Let soak briefly.

Put fresh water into the bottom of a steamer or a sticky rice pot and bring to the boil.

Toast the sesame seeds. Place in a mortar. Pound until most of the seeds are broken. Remove and set aside.

When the water comes to the boil, tip the vegetables into the steamer, allow them to drain and then place the steamer over the boiling water. Steam for 10 – 15 minutes depending on preferred crispness.

Roast the garlic and chillies. Cool. Remove their charred skins. Add the peeled garlic, chillies and galangal/ ginger to the mortar. Pound until a paste forms. Adding a dash of salt helps the blending.

When the vegetables are ready, toss them briefly in the steamer to expel the steam. Invert the steamer over a low-sided, wide bowl. Let the vegetables cool. Sprinkle them with the pounded sesame seeds and the pounded galangal/ginger and garlic paste. Add 2 tablespoons of soy sauce. Gently use your hands to mix the ingredients together well. Taste and adjust with sauce if needed.

Turn into a serving bowl, garnish with coriander and serve as part of a Lao meal. This dish goes well with sticky rice or can be used as a picnic dish.

Luang Prabang Watercress Salad

Salad

1 large bunch watercress (or 1 cup Chinese or regular celery leaves or 1 cup rocket)
4 eggs, hard-boiled, whites only; reserve the yolks for the dressing
2 C mesclun using whatever greens are available
1/2 C coriander leaves
1/2 C mint leaves
1 cucumber, peeled and sliced
10 cherry tomatoes or 2 medium tomatoes

Dressing

1/3 C light oil
4 T garlic, chopped
4 egg yolks, chopped
3 T sugar
2 T fish sauce
2 T soy sauce
4 T lime juice

To finish

1/4 C dry-fried peanuts, chopped

Method

Heat a wok or pan and dry fry the peanuts. Set the nuts aside to cool. When cool, chop.

Heat the oil on a medium heat. Add the chopped garlic and fry until golden brown, stirring frequently so it does not burn (about 2 minutes).

While the garlic is frying, mix together the chopped egg yolks, sugar, fish sauce and soy sauce in a deep bowl or screw-top jar. When the garlic is ready, remove it from the heat and cool. Add the garlic and its cooking oil to the mixture. Whisk or shake to blend well.

Add the lime juice and mix. Taste and adjust the sugar and lime juice.

Wash the watercress thoroughly in clean water; drain and discard any thick stems. Cut cherry tomatoes in halves. If using larger tomatoes, cut into wedges about 1 cm (½ in) thick at the widest part.

Assemble the salad on a large, flat plate or in a bowl by forming a bed of watercress which is topped with the other herbs and leaves, tomatoes and sliced egg whites in a nice pattern. Drizzle the dressing over the salad and sprinkle the chopped peanuts over the whole. Serve the salad immediately, as it will quickly wilt.

Variations

For a sweeter version, reduce the lime juice; for a sourer version, increase the lime juice. Do not reduce the sugar amount. Equal or other sugar substitute may be used as a replacement sweetener.

The number of eggs can be reduced to 2 or 3. The dressing will be thinner.

Save any remaining dressing in a screw-top jar and refrigerate for later use.

Thai Corn Salad

1 to 2 red Thai bird’s eye chiles (depending on your tolerance for heat), stemmed, seeded and cut into ½ -inch slices
4 cloves garlic, chopped
2 ounces green beans, cut into
1-inch pieces (3/4 cup)
2 tablespoons light brown sugar
2 tablespoons low-sodium soy sauce, or more as needed
1/4 cup fresh lime juice (from 2 or 3 limes)
2 medium tomatoes, cored and cut into 8 wedges each
3 medium carrots, coarsely grated
2 1/2 cups cooked corn kernels (from 3 cobs; see NOTE)
1 3/4 cups roasted, unsalted cashews

Combine the chiles (to taste) and garlic in a gallon zip-top bag and zip it almost all the way closed, leaving an inch or two unzipped. Use a rolling pin to pound the chiles and garlic through the plastic and form a rough paste. Add the beans and pound briefly to crush them a little. Add the brown sugar, soy sauce and lime juice.

Add the tomatoes and pound briefly, just to flatten them. Stir in the carrots and corn; pound gently, just to help the flavors incorporate. Taste, and add more soy sauce as needed.

Transfer to a serving bowl, top with the cashews and serve right away.

NOTE: For an easy way to briefly cook corn that makes it easy to husk and de-silk, dip the three cobs, husks and all, in water (just to moisten them). Microwave on HIGH for 4 to 5 minutes, until very hot. Remove, let cool for a bit, then use a sharp knife to cut crosswise through the husk and cob an inch or two from the wide end (opposite from the end with the tassel of silk). Hold the silk end, and push the corn out. To cut off the kernels, let the cobs cool until easy to handle. Cut the cobs in half crosswise, stand each half on one end and cut off the kernels from each side.

Coconut Corn Salad

3 tablespoons unsalted butter
5 ears of corn, shucked
fine grain sea salt
3 tablespoons fresh thyme leaves
1 cup big coconut flakes, well toasted
1 cup sliced almonds, well toasted
3 tablespoons chopped red onions
big squeeze of fresh lemon or lime juice

Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the corn, sprinkle with a couple pinches of salt and stir well, you want all the corn to be coated. Cook for just a minute, until the corn looses its raw edge, stir in half the thyme, and then transfer the corn to a large serving bowl.

Just before you’re ready to serve, add most of the coconut flakes, most of the almonds, the rest of the thyme, red onions, and citrus juice. Stir well. Taste, season with more salt, to taste, and serve topped with the remaining coconut and almonds (and another jolt of juice if needed!).

Pickled Peaches with Burrata

3 ripe peaches cut into thin slices
1/4 small red onion cut into thin slices
1/4 cup white wine vinegar
1 tsp. sugar
Salt and freshly ground pepper
4 cups mixed greens Spring Mix, arugula, spinach etc.
2 Tbsp. olive oil
8 oz. burrata or fresh mozzarella cut or torn into pieces

In a large bowl, combine vinegar and sugar. Add red onion slices with a little salt and pepper. Toss to combine. Allow to stand at room temperature about 10 minutes.

Add peach slices and allow them to “pickle” for a bit as well. Let sit in vinegar from 1-5 minutes, depending on how pickled you’d like them. Somewhere around 3 minutes gives a nice blend of sweet and sour. Drain off pickling liquid, reserving the liquid.

Add greens to the bowl and drizzle with olive oil and about 2 Tbsp. of the reserved pickling liquid. Toss to combine.

Place salad on plates and place pieces of burrata on top. Season with salt and pepper.

Spicy Chinese Chicken Salad

2 tablespoons sesame paste
2 tablespoons chili oil
2 tablespoons soy sauce
2 tablespoons rice vinegar or lime juice
2 teaspoons sugar
3 cloves garlic, chopped
2 scallions, chopped
1 tablespoon toasted sesame seeds
1 cooked rotisserie chicken, de-boned and shredded
8 oz. mixed salad greens
1/2 cup cilantro leaves
1/2 cup mint leaves
Instructions

In a medium bowl, stir together the sesame paste, chili oil, soy sauce, vinegar, sugar, garlic, scallions, and sesame seeds.

Add the chicken to a serving bowl, and spoon on some of the dressing.

Toss with the salad greens and herbs, and serve with any additional dressing on the side.

Orange Chicken Salad

For the salad:
4 cups leaf lettuce chopped
2 cups cooked chicken sliced or diced (about 2 small breasts)
2 slices cooked bacon diced
1 cup fresh raspberries
2 fresh oranges peeled and cut into segments (supremed)
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
1/3 cup goat cheese crumbles

For the salad dressing:
1 tsp orange zest
1/2 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1 clove garlic minced
1 Tbsp soy sauce
1 tsp honey
Pinch fresh minced ginger
Salt and freshly ground pepper to taste

Prepare salad dressing by combining all ingredients in a small bowl or jar. Whisk or shake to combine. Set aside.

Line a salad bowl with the chopped lettuce. Top with chicken, bacon, raspberries, oranges, walnuts and goat cheese crumbles. Drizzle with salad dressing. Toss to coat. Enjoy!

Coconut Crusted Chicken

4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
1/2 cup unsweetened coconut flakes
1/2 cup almond flour
Salt and pepper to taste
2 eggs
3 tbsp of virgin coconut oil
1 bag/8 cups of mixed salad greens or spinach
2 tbsp olive oil
2 tbsp lemon juice

Trim any remaining skin or white parts from the chicken breasts.

Rinse under cool water and pat dry using a clean kitchen towel or parchment.

On a chopping board, cut the chicken into strips somewhere between 1/2 an inch and an inch thick. Set aside.

In a shallow dish, combine coconut flakes, almond flour and salt and pepper.

In a bowl, crack eggs and beat lightly. Dip the chicken strips first in the egg and then roll in the coconut/almond flour mixture.

Heat the coconut oil in the pan over medium-high heat and sauté the chicken strips until the exterior turns a golden brown and the inside is no longer pink.

Remove from heat and place atop a bed of mixed greens. Drizzle with olive oil, lemon juice, and salt and pepper to taste and serve immediately.

Serves 4.

Coconut Slaw

1 head of green cabbage, shredded
1/2 head of red cabbage, shredded
1 large carrot, shredded
2 red bell peppers, julienned
1 bunch cilantro leaves, finely chopped
2 cups toasted unsweetened coconut flakes
1 can of coconut milk
2 tablespoons lime juice
2 tablespoons agave syrup
2 tablespoons sherry vinegar
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons salt
2 teaspoons black pepper

Mix vegetables and coconut evenly.

Blend dressing ingredients until smooth.

Combine dressing with slaw mix. Salt to taste.

Roasted Beets with Avocado, Citrus, and Hazelnuts

11/2 lb [680 g] red baby beets,
1 to 2 in [2.5 to 5 cm] in diameter
4 Tbsp [60 ml] extra-virgin olive oil
2 Tbsp water
Kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
1 Tbsp plus 1 tsp sherry vinegar
1 Tbsp fresh orange juice, plus 2 oranges
2 Tbsp hazelnuts
1 ripe avocado, cut in 1/4-in- [6-mm-] thick slices
Flaky sea salt
Best-quality olive oil for drizzling

Preheat the oven to 400°F [200°C].

In a roasting pan, toss the beets with 2 Tbsp of the extra-virgin olive oil and the water and season with kosher salt and pepper. Roast until the beets look caramelized and feel tender when pierced with the tip of a knife, about 25 minutes. When cool enough to handle, slip the skins off the beets and cut into quarters.

In a medium bowl, toss the beets with the remaining 2 Tbsp olive oil, the sherry vinegar, and orange juice. Season with kosher salt and pepper and let stand until the beets have absorbed the flavors of the dressing, about 30 minutes.

In a small, dry frying pan over medium heat, toast the hazelnuts until fragrant, 3 to 5 minutes. Lay out on a work surface and let cool. With the bottom of a heavy pan, crush the nuts.

Section one of the oranges by cutting off both ends. Set it on one end, and use a paring knife to cut away the peel and pith in strips, starting at the top and following the curves to the bottom. Then, holding the orange in one hand, carefully insert the blade of the knife between the flesh and the membrane to cut out the sections without any membrane attached. The sections should come out easily. Repeat with the remaining orange, and set aside.

Arrange the beets on a serving platter with the avocado slices, and sprinkle them with sea salt and pepper. Distribute the orange sections throughout the salad and sprinkle with the crushed toasted hazelnuts. Finish with a drizzle of best-quality olive oil. Serve immediately

Roasted Vegetable Basics

Broccoli:

2 large heads of broccoli, cut into large florets with some stalk attached
5 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss broccoli and oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and browned, 25–35 minutes.

Brussels Sprouts:

3 pounds brussels sprouts, trimmed, halved, quartered if large
5 tablespoons olive oil
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss brussels sprouts, oil, salt, and pepper on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and browned, 35–45 minutes.

Butternut Squash:

1 large butternut squash, peeled, seeded, cut into 1½-inch pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss squash and oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and browned, 35–45 minutes.

Carrots:
3 pounds carrots, peeled, cut into 3-inch pieces, halved lengthwised, quartered if large
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss carrots, oil, salt, and pepper on a rimmed baking sheet. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and browned, 35–45 minutes.

Cauliflower:

2 medium heads of cauliflower, cut into large florets with some stalk attached
5 tablespoons olive oil
Kosher salt, freshly ground pepper

Preheat oven to 450°. Toss cauliflower and oil on a rimmed baking sheet; season with salt and pepper. Roast, tossing occasionally, until tender and browned, 25–35 minutes.

Sweet Potatoes:

3 pounds sweet potatoes, peeled, cut into 1½-inch pieces
1/4 cup olive oil
2 teaspoons kosher salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper

Add appropriate combinations of following flavorings (choose 1 from each category, or maybe two finishes):

Aromatics
Ginger (grated): 1 Tbsp.
Garlic: 2-4 cloves grated or whole-roasted then smashed
Shallots: 2-4 shallots quartered
Onion: small, quartered
Leek: white and light green parts only, thinly sliced

Oils (use amountsin recipes)
Olive, vegetable, chicken fat, bacon fat, coconut

Herbs
Thyme, sage, rosemary, bay
1-2 tsp. chopped
1-2 bay leaves

Spices
Warming spices (cinnamon, allspice, cloves): 1/4 to 1/2 tsp.
Chile flake: 1/2 to 1 tsp.
Chili powder, paprika, and curry: 1-3 tsp.

Finishes (These go on after the veg is out of the oven.)
Oil drizzle (olive, pumpkin, walnut): 1-2 Tbsp.
Crunchy (toasted bread crumbs, seeds, fried onions or shallots) 1/4 – 1/2 cup
Spicy drizzle (tabasco, sriracha, sambal)
Sweets (dark brown sugar, maple, honey): 2-4 tsp
Meats (bacon, chorizo, sausage): 1/4 – 1/2 pound
Soy and fish sauce: 1-2 tsp.
Fresh herbs (tarragon, chives, parsley, mint, cilantro): 1/4 cup
Sour (citrus, malt vinegar, cider vinegar, wine vinegar, sherry vinegar): drizzle

Roasted Beets, Carrots, and Sunchokes with Green Tahini Sauce

1 lb beets, peeled, cut into ½” wedges
4 tablespoons olive oil, divided
Kosher salt, freshly ground black pepper
1 lb carrots, sliced 1/4” thick
1 lb Jerusalem artichokes (also called sunchokes), unpeeled, sliced ¼” thick
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon zest
1/4 teaspoon Aleppo pepper or hot paprika, plus more to taste
2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice, divided, plus more to taste
2 cups watercress, large stems trimmed
1/4 cup green tahini sauce (see related)

Optional: To save time, instead of green tahini sauce, thin some tahini with a combination of water and lemon juice. Grate ½ garlic clove, stir in, and season with salt.

Preheat oven to 425°. Toss beets with 1 Tbsp. oil on a lightly oiled rimmed baking sheet; arrange in a single layer and season with salt and black pepper. Roast 20 minutes, then turn over wedges and continue to roast until beets are tender and darkened around the edges, about 30 minutes total.

Toss carrots with 1 Tbsp. oil on one half of a lightly oiled rimmed baking sheet. Toss Jerusalem artichokes with 1 Tbsp. oil on the other half of the baking sheet. Arrange carrots and Jerusalem artichokes in a single layer, season with salt and black pepper, and roast until vegetables are lightly browned, about 20 minutes.

Toss all the warm roasted vegetables together with lemon zest, 1/4 tsp. Aleppo pepper, and 1 tsp. lemon juice. Season with salt, Aleppo pepper, and lemon juice.

Toss watercress with remaining 1 Tbsp. olive oil and 1 tsp. lemon juice; season to taste with salt and black pepper. Serve roasted vegetables with dressed watercress and tahini sauce.