I love autumn and all of the holidays that go along with and follow like little toy soldiers , don’t get me wrong, but let’s face it, this time of year is just plain hectic and tiring. Days become dreary, daylight is drastically shortened, and you just start to feel tired and a bit sluggish, not to mention freezing because our bodies haven’t quite had the chance to acclimate yet to the suddenly lower temperatures. So we’re craving hot, steaming dishes with a few extra carbs for energy, vitamins to help fight colds, and something easy and wholesome that soothes the soul and fills the tummy that’s also economical! The holidays are getting more and more costly each year! Ouch.
So here’s a dish that I love to make and crave often for about every reason mentioned! A naturally sweet, buttery, gently herbed, tender vegetable dish that you just pop into the oven and pretty much forget about it! A very easy, handy and delicious side dish to make when you have a ton of other things going on and just want something simple but tastes darn good!
Baby carrots are naturally sweet and lend a touch of sweetness to the rest of the veggies as they all cook, so it’s a very pleasing dish for kids! *Just make sure you are actually buying real baby carrots. “Baby Cut” carrots are simply regular carrots cut up and don’t hold a candle to their sweet cousin. It’s a very misleading label that I wish they’d outlaw. So don’t pay extra for a cheap impostor. You can of course use regular carrots if you’d like, just don’t be fooled and get taken by some of these sneaky manufacturers. Shame on them.
The onions will sweeten up a bit from not only the naturally sweet carrots, but also the butter, so choose whatever you happen to like. As far as the potatoes go though, choose ones that you don’t have to peel. Not because I’m lazy, I don’t mind peeling, but the skins not only taste good, help hold the potatoes together and lend texture, they also contain quite a lot of the vitamins. So we don’t want to peel off the skins! Russets are not good for this, though, because as the skins cook they’ll become leathery and very unpleasant. Choose Yukon Gold or red potatoes for this. I pretty much only use russets for baked potatoes anymore. The reds and golds you almost never have to peel unless preferred and it’s not only a time-saver, but healthier, too. Can’t beat that!
This is one of my humble all-time fall-time favorites that I’m sure you’ll enjoy for years to come. A real family pleaser that’s quick, tastes absolutely delicious, and welp, let’s face it, cheap! Nothing wrong with spending pennies on the sides to stretch the dollar to spend a bit more on higher quality main dishes, right?! 😉 Enjoy all and bundle up! It’s getting quite chilly out there!
EASY OVEN-SIMMERED POTATOES, SWEET BABY CARROTS & ONIONS
2 cups quality chicken bouillon, *I use Superior Touch Better Than Bouillon using 3 tsp. per 2 cups water for this
4 Tbl. butter, melted into the bouillon
1 tsp. dried thyme
1/2 tsp. italian seasoning
1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/4 tsp. coarse ground black pepper
4-6 red or Yukon Gold potatoes, unpeeled and quartered or cut into large chunks
1 (3-4 oz.) bag fresh baby carrots, or as many as you’d like
1 medium onion, cut into 1″ wide wedges
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. (*See note at the bottom.)
Dissolve chicken bouillon into the 2 cups water in microwave bringing water just to a boil. Stir well to mix and dissolve. Add butter, herbs, garlic powder and pepper. Stir.
Spray a 1 1/2 – 2 1/2 quart deep baking dish with butter-flavored cooking spray.
Nestle veggies into the sprayed baking dish, pour seasoned bouillon over, cover with a tight fitting lid, and pop into oven and bake for 1 1/2 – 2 hours. Stir once halfway through. *Remove lid during last 15 minutes. Yep, it’s that easy.
*If baking or roasting something to go along with that requires a lower temperature for longer, such as a whole chicken or pot roast, you can easily bake this at 325 degrees for a longer time. Just remove when tender. Reheats beautifully in the microwave and stays hot, covered, for quite some time to boot.