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HOW TO SHOCK VEGETABLES

It's shocking how often I see overcooked veggies on a plate - robbed of their color, texture and nutrients, they become a sad, unappetizing accompaniment to a meal.  But when cooked just to the point of a color change, forced into a state of suspended beauty by using an ice bath, an un-appetizing raw vegetable suddenly is transformed into something tasty, colorful, and sexy! After shocking, vegetables can be served cold (as in a crudites, or vegetable basket) or lightly and briefly cooked and sauced.   I've used green beans as the poster child for how to do this, but you can shock any veggie into a beautiful version of itself, and shockingly, shock yourself into a shocked state of shocked chef-dom! 

It's as easy as 1.2.3.

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  1.  Wash, trim and cut all your veggies into approximately the same size.  Into a large saucepan, add 2 tsp salt and bring to a boil.    

1.  Wash, trim and cut all your veggies into approximately the same size.  Into a large saucepan, add 2 tsp salt and bring to a boil.

 

  2.  Drop in your veggies and stir gently for 2-3 minutes until they all just become brighter in color.

2.  Drop in your veggies and stir gently for 2-3 minutes until they all just become brighter in color.

  3.  With tongs remove the veggies and place in a bowl filled with ice and water.  Let cool.  Remove to a strainer and refrigerate until ready to use.

3.  With tongs remove the veggies and place in a bowl filled with ice and water.  Let cool.  Remove to a strainer and refrigerate until ready to use.

 

At the point the veggies can be served in the following ways:

1.  Raw and arranged with other veggies on a crudite platter for an appetizer.

2.  Tossed with a little olive oil and balsamic or lemon juice, sprinkled with herbs, for a cold side.

3.  Quickly sauteed in olive oil or butter, seasoned and served as a warm side.