I love this time of year when the days are cooler and every other day is a proper winter's day. And just as the seasons change, so do my cravings for food. Right now I'm in love with baby veg.
Woolies has a fabulous selection of seasonable baby veg right now that are irresistibly cute and super healthy to boot. I love the variety of colours and textures and can hardly bear to cook them or even chop them up!
Baby veg are more tender, with a more delicate taste than their larger cousins, but the health benefits are about the same. Some are grown to be miniatures - such as baby turnips or broccoli, while others are picked young, such as onions, corn, squash, cabbage and brinjals. Others still are are mechanically cut to resemble baby versions.
BABY VEG TYPES
Woolies stock baby cabbages, baby carrots (look out for the baby rainbow ones), baby brinjals, baby gem squash, baby leeks, baby beetroot and, of course, baby marrows. Also look out for the big bag of mixed baby veg.
Take baby carrots. When it’s supper time and I’m all out of ideas for a side dish, I take the entire bag of ready-to-cook baby carrots and pop them onto a roasting tray, drizzle them with butter, salt and maple syrup (or honey, depending on what I have at home) and bake until they just tender.
Baby cabbages make a delicious salad mixed with raisins, spring onion and home-made mayo.
But they’re also great pan-fried in a couple of splashes of soya sauce, sesame oil and sprinkled with chopped chillies and a grating of ginger.
One thing I really believe is that life is really too short to peel a baby potato. Rather, I parboil them before placing them on a baking tray with sprinklings of sage, garlic, olive oil and seasonings. This is an easy, no-fuss dish to serve at a braai or with a Sunday roast.
Or take a bag of mixed baby roasting veg, toss with olive oil, sea salt and thyme and sprinkle with grated mozzarella (optional). Bake at 200ºC for about 30 minutes.
If you don't like mozzarella, drizzle with home-made cheese sauce or Woolies convenient ready-made cheese sauce.
One of my favourite dishes is this sugar snap pearl barley risotto to which I add sliced baby purple cabbage for delicious crunch and colour. Pearl barley has a deliciously nutty taste that goes so well with the earthy veg.
Enjoy your babies!
Email me your questions or suggestions
MORE WAYS TO USE BABY VEG