Did you ever have that moment in your teens or adulthood when you realized that steamed vegetables were not the only vegetables. Honestly, once I discovered roasted veggies, everything paled in comparison.
I distinctly remember going out to a nice restaurant and instead of the usual "with seasonal vegetables" side of steamed broccoli, cauliflower, and carrot blend that usually comes when the menu says that, I was served carrots that had been roasted with a hint of sesame oil. Wow. Talk about next level. When I moved to the south, I was interested in okra- a totally new experience to me. The heavily battered and fried version just didn't really thrill me, so I tried roasting it with a little oil and cajun seasoning. Suddenly, I loved okra! *Side note: I also love okra in soups or stewed with tomatoes, but that doesn't really relate to roasting.
Aside from okra, another aspect of living in the south is that heating up my kitchen to roast veggies in my oven is not so fun. In fact, it can be pure torture. Even with the air conditioner set at arctic breeze, the person standing over the stove gets active volcano breeze. So, when I got my air fryer, my oven got to take a little break for summer. I've tried from both frozen or fresh, and I am pleased to find that within 7-9 minutes at 400 degrees in my air fryer (no preheating time with that either), I have delicious roasted broccoli (from FROZEN or fresh), green beans (again, from frozen or fresh), cauliflower, brussel sprouts (these take a bit longer if whole), carrot strips, and more! I even roasted stuffed mushrooms in 8 minutes at 400 degrees! Thank you Kite Hill chive cream cheese for the most amazing filling. I've roasted cubes of butternut squash, sweet peppers for a salad, and summer squash. It's all so flavorful and delicious.
The point is, Air Frying offers a quick and no-heating-up-the-kitchen way to make roasted veggies any time. I have been making roasted broccoli or green beans a lot lately because the kids like them and it's such an easy way too make a side (or if you eat a giant bowl of broccoli, a main). I've even read that you can roast garlic in it, but haven't tried yet!
Honestly, I thought my Air Fryer was going to be to make french fries and crispy tofu and that's it (and those things are both AWESOME in the air fryer), but I've found that I use it just about every day. Follow my Instagram and/or Facebook and you'll see that I often use it for such simple things, it doesn't see, worthwhile to blog about.
I wrote a children's book, How Our Vegan Family Celebrates, to help vegans and vegan allies know how to include vegans in their celebrations and give affirmation to vegan kids who may feel alone. The book goes through holidays throughout the year and has a section at the back with parent tips!
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I love cooking and playing in the kitchen with my toys, so let me share that joy with you and your family to bring the FUN back into the kitchen!