Chef Marc Forgione uses spring onions in this seasonal blend, which many people confuse with scallions. Spring onions have a larger round bulb and long stems, as well as a more forward flavor, while scallions (or green onions) are mild and don’t have much of a bulb at all.
Confit of Vegetables
- 4 golden baby beets (1 to 1-1/2 inches in diameter), scrubbed well and dried
- 4 bulbs baby fennel (tops removed), trimmed and quartered, or 1 medium fennel bulb, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
- 4 scallions (1 inch in diameter) peeled and trimmed, leaving some greens attached, or 1 medium onion, cut into 1/2-inch wedges
- 3 to 5 cups extra-virgin olive oil
- Three 3-inch fresh thyme sprigs, plus 1 tsp. chopped leaves
- Three 3-inch fresh tarragon sprigs plus 1-1/2 tsp. chopped
- 1 fresh Turkish or California bay leaf (or half dried)
- 8 baby carrots, scrubbed well and dried
- 6 baby yellow squash
- 2 cups cauliflower florets
- 1 head spring garlic, peeled if skin is thick, or 1 medium leek, white and pale green parts only, halved lengthwise and again crosswise
- Flaky sea salt, such as Maldon, and freshly ground black pepper
- 2 Tbs. chopped fresh flat leaf parsley
- Put the beets, fennel, and onion in a 3-quart heavy saucepan. Add enough olive oil to just cover the vegetables and submerge the herbs. Clip a deep-fry thermometer to the side of the pan and bring the oil to 180°F to 190°F over medium heat. Reduce the heat to maintain the temperature and cook until the vegetables are very tender (test by piercing one of each with a small, sharp knife), about 1 hour for the onions and fennel, 1-1/4 hours for the beets. Transfer the vegetables as they are ready with a slotted spoon to a flame-proof shallow baking dish. Add the carrots, summer squash, cauliflower, and spring garlic (or leek, if using) to the oil and cook until very tender, 30 to 45 minutes, then transfer to dish.
- Remove the skins from the beets and halve or quarter. Return to dish. Sprinkle the vegetables with some sea salt and black pepper. Drizzle with 2 Tbs. of poaching oil. (Strain the remainder and keep chilled in an airtight container for another use.)
- Put an oven rack about 4 inches from the broiler and heat the broiler.
- Put the baking dish in the oven and broil until lightly browned on top, 2 to 3 minutes. Sprinkle with the chopped herbs and serve.