It's easy to cook vegetables. Jina’s has got a review of the basic cooking techniques for you. And when you’re in the Jina’s store, don’t hesitate to ask our staff “How would I cook this?”
Steaming is simple, fast, and the very healthiest way to cook vegetables. It is best for firm vegetables: green beans, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots, new potatoes, Savoy cabbage, and Asian greens. First, slice the vegetables into bite-sized pieces. Then steam them one of two ways:
Microwave – Put the vegetables into a tray or bowl with two centimeters of water. Cover them, and start the microwave. The time to cook will depend on your microwave.
Stove – Use a large pot with two centimeters of water in the bottom. Set the vegetables in the steamer, and close the pot with its lid. Turn the heat up to high so that the water boils. This will steam the vegetables. Steam until the vegetables are bright but fork-tender. If you need to, add more water.
Boiling is a close second as the healthiest way to cook the harder root vegetables, as well as green beans, peas, broad beans, beets, sweet corn, and pumpkin.
When cooking potatoes or kumara, add the vegetables and water to the pot, then heat the water to boiling.
For all other vegetables, add them to boiling water.
To avoid overcooking boiled vegetables, after they are done, drain them, take them out of the pot, and put them in a cool bowl. Salt them after they are cooked - do not add salt to the cooking water.
Baking and Roasting Vegetables
Baking and roasting are the time-honored way to cook hard root vegetables, including carrots, parsnips, potatoes, kumara, beets, and onions. Most vegetables, including marrow, courgette, and eggplant, can be baked or roasted. Innovative cooks are even roasting asparagus, tomatoes, and broccoli now, for intense new tastes.
Potatoes and kumara can be baked whole in their skins. Simply scrub them, make a small cut in the skin on one side, and bake for 1 to 2 hours on 180 degrees.
To roast other vegetables, use a heavy glass or metal pan. Add 1 – 2 tablespoons of oil to the pan. Cut the vegetables to size, toss them in the oil in the pan, and roast them at around 180 degrees. Turn the vegetables occasionally so that they cook evenly. The smaller you cut the vegetables, the more quickly they will roast.
Click here to read more cooking techniques - stir-frying, deep-frying, and more!