“English vegetables? What are they?” you ask. I have never heard this term being used outside of Tamil Nadu. Like every community, the one I come from has its own idiosyncrasies and vocabulary. Like Centum in Math, ‘English vegetables’ is one such term. Tambrahms use as a blanket term for vegetables such as green beans, carrots, cauliflower, cabbage, and beets. Obviously because these vegetables require cooler temperatures to grow and so can only be grown in the mountains in Tamil Nadu. And probably because the English ate more of these. But as a vegetarian community, we took any vegetable that came our way and co-opted them in our way and cook them in a variety of ways.
As my readers know, I am constantly looking for grain substitutes, especially for wheat, which my body does not like at all. I am not gluten intolerant just wheat makes me lethargic and tired. But I like bruschetta! So I came up with an inspired alternative. Beet slices in place of bread or toast for a fake bruschetta! If you are a beet lover like me, go for it! Previously, I have posted a recipe for roasted beets and lentil salad. This turned out to be pretty good, actually. I am looking forward to creating more recipes with beets as a base.
- Baby beets: 3-4 (or one medium – large beet)
- Chopped Carrots: 1/2 cup
- Chopped Green Beans: 1/2 cup
- Chopped onions: 2 tbsp
- Chopped sweet peppers: 1/4 cup
- Olive oil: 1/2 tbsp
- Black pepper
- Lemon juice
- Dry white wine (optional): 2 tbsp
- Steam beets and slice them into 1 inch thick circles.
- Heat olive oil in a skillet on stovetop.
- Stir fry onions and sweet peppers for for a minute.
- Add the wine (optional) and reduce it to 1/2 tbsp
- Add the green beans and cook for a couple of minutes
- Add the carrots
- Add salt, pepper, and thyme and stir to coat
- Cook for a few minutes until the vegetables are tender with a little crunchiness. This should only take 3-5 minutes.
- Add lemon juice, mix, and turn off the stove.
- Serve with sliced beets.
- Spoon the medley on top of the slice beet, pop into your mouth and enjoy!
- You can serve it as a main dish for vegetable lovers with some soup or chowder.
- Serve it as a side or a party appetizer.
- Vary the herbs and spices. Throw in some spinach, basil with feta cheese for a Mediterranean flavor. Or arugula and goat cheese. Buttered spicy corn hash. Any filling that you would use in a savory tart would work for this recipe.