Recipe: Poached Spring Vegetables

London’s springy weather has been tempting me to try some new, fresh-tasting recipes. For inspiration, I turned to Yotam Ottolenghi’s Plenty, of which we have the German version (called Genussvoll vegetarisch). Also, my mom keeps making recipes from her (English-language) copy of Plenty and telling me how good they are (I know, too; we’ve made this a few times), so she also inspired me to crack open the book and find something nice for a Sunday dinner.

IMG_5511

so springy

For a main dish, F and I made an amazing caramelized garlic and goat cheese tart. As a side, we tried these “pochiertes juges Gemüse” (“poached young vegetables”). The vegetables, lightly poached in a white wine-olive oil-lemon juice mixture, turned out well. They retained some crunch and still tasted fresh and bright. Poached spring vegetables would be a great accompaniment to any meaty main you might cook up. The recipe is also easy to expand or contract, depending on how many people you’ll be feeding and/or how many leftovers you want.

Poached Spring Vegetables (adapted from Yotam Ottolenghi’s Genussvoll vegetarisch/Plenty)

Ingredients

  • Vegetables:
    • 5-7 young carrots, peeled
    • 3 fennel bulbs
    • 2-3 bunches thin green asparagus
    • 3 thin zucchini
    • 2-3 thin leeks
    • to taste: minced fresh dill
  • Poaching liquid:
    • 750mL  (1 bottle) white wine
    • 250mL olive oil
    • juice of 3 lemons
    • 2 bay leaves
    • 1 onion, quartered
    • 2 celery stalks, cut into chunks
    • 1 tsp salt

Procedure

  • Wash the vegetables. Cut the carrots, zucchini, and leeks lengthwise into sticks that are about the same thinness as the asparagus. Slice the fennel thinly.
  • Pour the wine into a large pot and let it heat over medium-high for a few minutes. Add the rest of the poaching liquid ingredients and bring to a boil.
  • When the liquid boils, poach the vegetables: first carrots and fennel, then asparagus, then zucchini and leeks. If your pot is big enough, you can poach everything together; if not, poach the vegetables in batches (like I did). Each set of veggies should take 3-5 minutes to poach — you want them cooked but still a little crunchy.
  • Serve the poached vegetables with some of the liquid and garnish with fresh dill.

Enjoy!

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