Pan Fried Vegetables
©2005, The Naked Whiz

A great way to fry up some vegetables on a hot summer day when you don't want to heat up the kitchen. If you have two cookers, you can be doing this on one while preparing other dishes in the other. The following recipe makes enough for 2, but feel free to scale up to meet your needs!

Ingredients:

Preparation Instructions:

The photo to the right shows about the size of the potatoes used and the size of the pieces you want after you have quartered the potatoes. When you slice and quarter the zuchini, you want to end up with pieces about the same size as the potatoes.

Slice the half onion into slices about 3/16 to 1/4 inch thick. Peel the garlic and either use a garlic press or mince it finely with a knife. You want small uniform pieces.

Stabilize your cooker at 500 degrees. You can cook this dish on a raised grid, but we prefer to use a plate setter legs up and place a grid on that. We have found that having a cast iron frying pan too close to the radiant heat of the fire tends to ruin the seasoning. Place a large cast iron frying pan or other large cast iron cooking vessel that has sides on the grate and allow it to thoroughly pre-heat.

Cooking Directions:

While the cooker is heating up, place the potatoes in a sauce pan, cover with water, and bring to a boil over high heat. Once the water is boiling, reduce heat to low and let the potatoes cook for 8 minutes. Once the potatoes are done, drain the water and run cold water over the potatoes to cool them and stop them from cooking further. You can add ice to the pan of water to cool the potatoes more quickly.
Once the potatoes are thoroughly cooled, place all ingredients except the olive oil into a bowl large enough to allow you to thoroughly toss the ingredients. Add the olive oil last, then toss to thoroughly coat all the ingredients. Use plenty of olive oil as this will be your cooking oil in the pan. Allow this to sit for 15 minutes.

When your cooker is stable at 500 degrees and the frying pan is thoroughly hot, dump all the vegetables into the hot frying pan, using a spatula or other implement to spread them evenly. The more the vegetables are in contact with the hot iron, the better. Cook for 9 minutes, stirring and turning the vegetables every 3 minutes. Very carefully move the cooked vegetables from the pan to a serving dish. Hot cast iron is hot!

Notes:

  1. Use the largest cast iron vessel you can as you want the vegetables to come into contact with the hot iron as much as possible. You don't want them piled up too high in the pan.

  2. We think that it is best to do this as an indirect cook with a plate setter so as to shield the cast iron pan from the intense direct radiant heat of the fire. This appears to destroy the seasoning over time. We have also started wiping the outside of the frying pan with some oil before putting it in the cooker. This seems to protect the pan's outside.

  3. Feel free to substitute vegetables for others that you like. You may need to par-boil some vegetables in order to get all the different vegetables done at the same time once they are cooked together in the cast iron pan.

  4. This goes real well with flank steak prepared fajita-style. First you cook the steak. While it is resting after the cook, you put the cast iron pan in the hot cooker, heat it up, and then cook the veggies. When the veggies are almost done, slice the flank steak. Here's the magic part: Dump the veggies into a bowl and you will have a hot pan filled with wonderful crusty bits of vegetables, garlic and onion. Dump the slices of steak into the pan, turn to coat the meat with all those lovely bits, and cook the meat until it is the level of doneness you like.

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