Roast veg like a professional

Whether you love succulent smoked salmon, or prefer a perfect piece of pork, there is one addition to the plate that can always complete any meal – delicious roast vegetables.

People are often disappointed when they cook vegetables as they can easily take on a mushy texture or a bland flavour, but that’s simply because they need to be cooked in a slightly different way which lets their taste burst through.

Mark Holmes, Metro Fresh executive chef at Abraham Guest Academy, North West School Chef of the Year:  Roasted vegetables

Mark Holmes, Metro Fresh executive chef at Abraham Guest Academy, North West School Chef of the Year: Roasted vegetables

Following my last recipe on cooking the perfect roast chicken, I’ve decided to focus on how you can cook delicious roast vegetables to complete the meal. We’re going to cook roasted potatoes, parsnips and carrots, and to serve six you will need:

Four large potatoes, three parsnips, four carrots, one bulb of garlic, three sprigs of fresh rosemary, sea salt and black pepper and olive oil.

1) Firstly, get your oven nice and hot by preheating it to 200C (400F/Gas mark 6). Peel all of your vegetables and cut any larger ones in half lengthways. Then cut in half again until they’re in batons.

2) Next, break your garlic bulb into cloves and leave them unpeeled. Bash them slightly with the palm of your hand so that they flatten slightly, and then pick the rosemary leaves from the woody stalks.

3) Now add the potatoes and carrots into a large pan of salted, boiling water on a high heat and bring back to the boil. Continue to boil for five more minutes and then add in your parsnips and cook for a further four minutes.

4) Drain your vegetables in a colander and put your carrots and parsnips to one side. You now need to ‘fluff up’ your potatoes by shaking them around in the colander - this bit’s important as it will ensure that your potatoes have lovely little crispy bits when cooked!

5) Next, put a large roasting tin over a medium heat and add a couple of generous lugs of your olive oil.

6) Add in your garlic and rosemary leaves and then your vegetables along with a generous pinch of salt. Make sure you give them a good stir around to coast them in the flavour, and then spread them into one layer so that they roast (they will steam if you have them all on top of each other).

7) Finally, put them into your preheated oven and cook for around one hour until they are golden, crisp and lovely. Serve straight away with your roast chicken and some delicious gravy.

lGo online this weekend at www.halifaxcourier.co.uk and see Glenn demonstrating roasting vegetables.