6 Wonderful Ways to Eat Root Vegetables
You’ve undoubtedly had mashed potatoes, and maybe even mashed sweet potatoes – but have you ever tried mashed parsnips or turnips? Or how about mashed combined root veggies? For the latter, choose 3 lbs. of root vegetables (like parsnips, rutabagas, turnips, or carrots) and chop them coarsely. Throw them in a large pot with 4 cloves of garlic.
Bring to a boil, then simmer for half an hour, or until the vegetables are quite tender. In the meantime, combine 2 cups heavy cream, ½ cup of butter, 1 handful of fresh thyme, another of fresh rosemary, and 2 bay leaves in another pot. Set over low heat and don’t allow the liquid to boil. Cover; when the butter melts, remove from the stove.
Drain the boiled veggies and remove the herbs from the cream mixture. Place the vegetables back in the pot and mash them. Gradually stir in the cream mixture. Season with salt and pepper.
I once read that cooking star Julia Child detested roasted vegetables – but I confess it’s one of my favorite ways to eat root veggies.
Just chop the veggies, pour into a roasting pan, add a little oil and some seasonings and in less than an hour you have drool-worthy vegetables.
When making your favorite stews, instead of reaching for the same old vegetables, go for what’s in season. This time of year, that certainly includes root vegetables. Try parsnips, turnips, beets, and rutabagas. Chop them coarsely into pieces about twice as big as bite sized.
This ensures relatively quick, even cooking.
Cut into coarse chunks. Pour oil into the bottom of a heavy pot and heat over medium-high heat. Once the oil is warm, add the vegetables. Season with salt and add (per serving) ½ cup or so of chicken, vegetable, or beef stock. Cover and reduce heat so the liquid simmers.
Once the vegetables are tender and slightly browned, serve. For additional flavor, sprinkle with fresh herbs before serving.
If you have a covered location for grilling, this is a unique and excellent way to serve root vegetables. Small vegetables can go on the grill whole. Slice larger veggies.
Brush with oil, season with salt, and grill on medium until tender.
For a healthier snack, make your own chips from root veggies. Slice them thinly (a mandoline helps here) and drop them in a large plastic g. Add about a tablespoon of oil. Seal the bag and toss to coat the veggies with oil.
Lay a piece of parchment paper in the microwave and place the veggie slices on it in a single layer, not touching. Microwave for a few minutes, until slightly browned.
Remove the chips and sprinkle with salt; allow to cool before serving.
For more ideas on cooking with root vegetables, see “Exploring Root Vegetables.”
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