Cooking Techniques

Kitchen Notes

Braising is a wonderful way to prepare fall vegetables. The technique draws out the natural sweetness in the season’s bounty of root vegetables, winter squash, cruciferous vegetables, leafy greens, and cabbage. You can prepare a fragrant, intensely flavored dish with very little effort. It’s also a superb choice for farm chicken—the slow cooking yields a succulent, juicy bird. Best of all, team chicken and veggies together for a delectable, one pot meal.

Basic Ingredients

Cauliflower, broccoli, broccoli rabe, carrots, leeks and Swiss chard are all delicious braised. Some vegetables that you might not normally think of that are also surprisingly tasty braised are celery, parsnips, butternut squash and cabbage.

Easy Steps

Braising involves two simple steps: browning your ingredients in a little olive oil or butter or even bacon fat, then cooking them at a low simmer in either water, stock or wine, often with a handful of aromatics tossed in. It’s important to give the vegetables plenty of room in the pan so that they brown at first rather than steam. A pinch of sugar, helps the vegetables to brown and the liquid to reduce to a glaze and coats the veggies. Braised vegetables are delicious served at room temperature, making them a good entertaining option.

Tasty Combinations
  • Braised cabbage with onion and hot pepper
  • Braised chicken with lemons and garlic
  • Braised leeks with bacon and thyme
  • Braised cauliflower with curry

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