In our last post we saw that you can bake chicken and potatoes, aside from all the sweet stuff like cookies, cakes etc.

Today we are going to see what we can ROAST. Curiously, both chicken and potatoes show up in the top 20 occurrences of ROAST followed by a noun, first word to the right (right column) and second to the right (left column):



So, what’s the difference between the two methods?

In fact, it seems to be a question of terminology. Both bake and roast  imply ‘cooking in an oven by dry heat’. The difference is that when the method is applied to meats and vegetables it is called roasting. And you can see from the above lists that this is confirmed – most words refer to either some type of meat or some kind of vegetables, with the exception of references to the time of roasting, the oven itself and…marshmallows. In most cases, both bake and roast are translated as ‘assar’ in Portuguese.


So, let’s look at some examples. First with time references and the word oven:

  • Spread on prepared baking sheet, and roast 30 minutes, or until carrots are tender.
  • Roast 25 minutes, or until browned on top and tender.
  • Place goose in oven and roast 1 hour.
  • Wrap beet in foil, and roast in oven 45 minutes to 1 hour.


Next we’ll look at collocations with words referring to some kind of meat: 

  • She’d roasted a chicken and made a salad.


When compared to bake a chicken it seems that when you roast a chicken you roast the whole chicken, in one piece. When you bake it, it may be in pieces. In Portuguese, both are ‘frango assado’:


Roast chicken                                      Baked chicken


But I’m sure there are exceptions.

Here are a few more examples: 

  • Roast your turkey on a bed of quartered onions and halved heads of garlic to perfume the meat (and the house).
  • Roasting a pig, he says, “is like tending to a newborn.”
  • Roast duck in preheated oven for 1 hour.
  • There we roasted some meat and chickens and made a salad of greens and tomatoes.
  • I don’t want to roast the meat, I want to grill it.
  • We roasted hot dogs and sausages while getting to know each other.
  • Roast the lamb in the oven for about 45 minutes.


I hope you have noticed that dogs in the left-hand list, in position 16, refers to hot dogs!! And, as you can see from the picture, in this case the hot dogs are roasted over an open fire, as are marshmallows:


  • They were also roasting hot dogs and marshmallows on sticks over the fire.


Let move on to vegetables now. 

It seems that the most frequently roasted vegetable is red (bell) peppers. All in all, there are 133 occurrences of ROAST with either peppers, red peppers or red bell peppers:

  • Roast the peppers over a gas flame or on an electric element until blackened all over.
  • To roast peppers: Place peppers directly on grate over gas burner.
  • Abundis helped herself to tea while Maines roasted red peppers for dinner.
  • Roast the bell peppers the same way.


Interestingly, a very frequent collocation is roasted red peppers and most examples indicate that they come in a jar:

  • 1 jar (12 oz) roasted red peppers, drained and sliced.
  • 1 (7-oz.) jar roasted red bell peppers, drained and chopped.
  • Puree roasted red peppers, garlic, lemon juice, and canned white beans. Serve with freshly cut vegetables for dunking.


Just like red peppers, you can roast many other vegetables, like potatoes, tomatoes and garlic, for instance. Be sure to read all the examples below. You might get some useful ideas for cooking:

  • Be sure to roast the vegetables long enough for the onions to get well done.
  • Roast green beans and carrots 20 to 30 minutes (depending on thickness), or until vegetables begin to turn deep brown in spots.
  • Roast the potatoes until tender when pierced with a fork, 50 to 55 minutes.
  • She also enjoyed the new flavors produced by oven roasting sweet potatoes and red potatoes with just a hint of spices.
  • Roasting the tomatoes gave them a full flavor and the meaty aesthetic I desired.
  • Roasting the tomatoes, peppers, onions and garlic intensifies their flavor.


When it comes to potatoes, there is a clear difference between baked potatoes and roasted potatoes. Check it out below:


Baked potatoes                                                 Roasted potatoes  

Maybe we can add another piece of information here: roasted potatoes take no gravy – they are roasted dry –, while baked potatoes usually have some kind of gravy or stuffing. A rule of thumb for the difference between bake and roast would be that you roast something that is solid, like meat and vegetables, but you bake something that is soft, like the batter for cakes, cookies, breads etc.


And, last but not least, we can also roast coffee or cocoa beans, but in this case the Portuguese translation is ‘torrar’, as you know:

  • Eb roasted green coffee beans in a skillet.
  • We realized that we had 45 days to roast coffee and make money, because we had a payment due.
  • Smoke is easy to manage if you roast coffee on a grill outdoors.
  • Roasting the [cocoa] beans over a flame imparted still more flavor and aroma.


Now that I have whetted your apetite and made your mouth water, here are a couple of easy and quick recipes so you can run into the kitchen and satisfy your hunger:

Roasted Potatoes







2 pounds potatoes, cut into quarters
2 tablespoons vegetable oil
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 tablespoon dried rosemary, crushed
1 tablespoons minced garlic (4 cloves)



1 – Preheat oven to 250 degrees C.
2 – Place potatoes in a large roasting pan and toss with oil, salt, pepper, and rosemary until evenly coated. Spread out potatoes in a single layer.
3 – Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally. Serve immediately.


Tip: you can add any other spices you like. Paprika is also a nice addition.

Roasted garlic


roasted garlic







1 – Preheat oven to 250 degrees C.
2 – Place unpeeled garlic cloves in the oven for 20 to 30 minutes.
3 – When roasted, you should be able to squeeze the garlic out of the cloves.


4 – Slice off the very top of the garlic head. Place in a piece of foil and drizzle olive oil inside the head of garlic until it is completely filled.
5 – Wrap tightly with foil and place on a cookie sheet and bake until tender and fragrant, roughly 35 minutes.
6 – Remove from the oven and let cool, then gently squeeze each clove out.

Tip: Use in any recipe you like, or simply spread on bread for a wonderful addition to any meal.

Hope you enjoyed this post