Open the can and if it is tin, empty its contents at once. If the vegetable is surrounded by liquid, use the water in cooking the vegetable, as it contains valuable materials. There are some who contend, however, that the flavor of certain vegetables such as peas and string beans is improved if the vegetable water is drained from them and they are cooked in fresh water. If this is done, the vegetable water should not be wasted. It should be used in making soup or sauce. If possible, let the vegetable stand exposed to the air for an hour or longer.
If the vegetable is to be served plain, turn into a saucepan. Cook in its own liquor at boiling temperature, for at least 30 minutes. (Cooking at boiling temperature for this length of time is advised to remove any possible danger of botulism.) When cooked, the liquid should be almost entirely evaporated. Add butter, salt, and, if desired, a very little sugar, and serve hot.
A White Sauce may also be used with a vegetable that has been heated as above.