No matter what time of year, or the mix ingredients you use, a tray of roasted vegetables always looks gorgeous. It really may be one of my favorite things to look at. Take this dish of roasted fennel and potatoes with tomatoes. All the colors are beautiful, with bold pops of red, rich white, and caramelized goodness topped with bright green fennel fronds. The smell is fantastic (everyone loves the smell of potatoes and garlic), and when you take a bite you’ll be surprised how creamy and comforting spring veggies can be. And it’s so simple to make…can’t beat that!
When you roast something, the flavor concentrates and tastes richer, almost decadent. This recipe roasts a trio of vegetables in honey and oil…as if you were confit-ing the veggies. The oil keeps everything moist while the honey provides a mild sweetness that’s evened out by the garlic and a few simple spices. Don’t worry, it won’t taste like a mouthful of honey. The fennel provides a savory licorice flavor, and the roasting process makes then silky but still firm enough to stand up to the rest of the dish. Oh, and the potatoes…the potatoes are like butt-ah! SO creamy you will be hard pressed not to drool. Finally, baking the tomatoes gives all the veggies a sauce to simmer in. It’s hard to explain, but you’ll get it when you make it for yourself.
I like to serve these roasted veggies with toasted bread (so you can sop up the flavorful liquid and extra tomatoes). It’s really good and all it takes is throwing it into a pan to bake. It smells like comfort, tastes like heaven, and looks absolutely divine. What else could you ask for?
1 bay leaf
12 fingerling potatoes
3/4 cup grape tomatoes (halved)
1 fennel bulb
3 garlic cloves (chopped)
1/4 cup honey
6 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 teaspoon dry mustard
1/4 teaspoon cumin
Cayenne pepper, to taste
Salt/pepper, to taste
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees Fahrenheit.
Bring a pot of water to a boil. Add a large pinch of salt and bayleaf. Add potatoes and cook for 5 minutes. Remove from water and slice in half. Put potatoes into a large casserole dish.
Slice the fennel, add to the casserole dish.
Add in the halved tomatoes and chopped garlic.
In a small bowl, mix together the oil, honey, dry mustard, cumin, and cayenne pepper. Pour over the vegetables in the casserole dish. Sprinkle with salt and pepper. Using your hands, mix everything together.
Bake for 40 minutes or until lightly browned.
Garnish with fennel fronds.