Your Friendly Neighborhood Root Vegetables – Winter Staples with Lots of Potential

When “root vegetable” is said, what pops to mind?  Potatoes?  Carrots?  Sweet Potatoes?  From here, the vegetables sort of fall of the standard American table, only to be seen in strange soups, root bakes or the occasional foodie dinner.  Here at LLL we love us some root vegetables, as evidenced by last night dinner.

Clockwise from the top, Parsnips and Potatoes, Carrots, Rutabaga and Gilfeather Turnip

To be fair, we never liked any of the ‘odder’ root vegetables until moving to New England and trying fresh, well-grown and regular sized veggies.  Our first rutabaga was a monster from the grocery store, about the size of a softball, and tasted so bitter that we threw out the whole meal.  Our first parsnips were also large, and mostly tough core.  Bleh.  Here parsnips, rutabaga, carrots and potatoes were roasted to crispy sweet-salty goodness.  They are like replacement potato chips, and nearly as addictive (to me).  There was supposed to be a garlic dipping sauce, but that never quite came to fruition, and the chips were just as good without.

Produce roasts the best when it has room to breath, and is not touching those around it

The rest of dinner had a root vegetable and a hearty winter green.  We had “Roasted Beets in a Creamy Mustard Sauce” from Farmer John and “Quick Meal Cabbage with Ham” from Asparagus to Zucchini.

On the side we had more root vegetable with a shredded daikon radish and carrot salad, just a simple thing of shredded vegetable, vinegar, honey, salt, pepper and cilantro.  Light and refreshing, it brings crispness and zing to meal.

I can't quite tell how the picture was taken, but it is pretty looking anyway.

Dessert was more ice cream, but a peanut butter cup ice cream sundae of sorts.

Super yummy

I made a quick chocolate ganache, and topped that with vanilla ice cream from Batch, and little dollop of peanut butter.  Laura commented that after the challenge, we will never go back to eating regular milk chocolate again.  I can concur in some respects, we have eaten almost nothing but semi-sweet baking chocolate, 70% and 80% dark chocolate for a long time.  The only place I think I will still want milk chocolate would be chocolate chip cookies.  It just seems right.

With a long winter ahead of us, we will have to get creative with our storage vegetables, which should be an interesting endeavor.  We will never be hungry, and lets hope we don’t get bored!  If you ever have any ideas or suggestions, always feel free to contribute.  We always love new ideas!

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