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Short ribs and baby octopus may dominate many menus in the city, but that doesn’t mean local chefs can’t find love in an acorn squash. In Chefs Veg Out, we’ll prove D.C.’s chefs can play with more than just meat.

  • Name: Ed Witt
  • Title: Executive Chef
  • Restaurant: 701
  • Twitter: @EdWitt
  • Cooking Since: 1993
  • Distinguishing Feature: A head tattoo with an anchor, swallows, and rose
  • Favorite Vegetable: Potato. “It’s tasty and versatile as a main dish or side. I grew up eating simply and there was always some kind of potato on the table. I’m happy with just a simple baked potato.”

    Least Favorite Vegetable: Fiddlehead ferns. “I don’t like the flavor and it tastes like dirty asparagus.” Memorable Meatless Dish: Apple and Butternut Squash Raviolo at Belcourt in New York City’s East Village. “It finishes with brown butter, which brings everything together.” (And the difference between ravioli and raviolo? “A raviolo is one big ravioli on the plate.”)

    Best Vegetable Dish at 701: Trumpet royal mushrooms with salsify and a sauce of blood orange and honey gastrique (caramelized honey reduced with a Thai long peppercorn).

    Quick and Dirty Meatless Idea: Brussels sprout side. “Sautee Brussels sprouts until tender and caramelized. Roast, peel and dice quinces. Roast halved cipollini onions. Peel, then quarter chestnuts and toast in brown butter. Throw everything together in a pan with a little bit of veg broth and toss with a grain mustard.”

    Photo by Jen Galatioto