I am very affected by the weather and the seasons when I prepare food. Certain summer foods I wouldn't dream of eating in the winter months and vice versa. The word "roasted" conjures up all kinds of warm images, fired in a toasty hearth. These are the hot and hearty foods that I crave on cold days. There is something especially appealing to me about roasting a food that grew snugly in the earth, amidst all of the minerals and nutrients that they absorb.
The first thing that typically comes to mind when people think of root vegetables are carrots and potatoes, but they are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to these nutritious tubers and bulbs. When I went to the market yesterday to find some good examples of root vegetables, I was happy to find a good variety of them. I bought: parsnips, rutabaga, turnips, sweet potato, onion and carrots. I decided to add a little flavor, aroma and texture by adding a chopped bulb of fennel, also known as Florence fennel. I simply peeled and chopped everything, tossed them with olive oil, and a bit of seasoning, and roasted them uncovered for 40 minutes. The result was not only delicious, hearty and bone warming, but it also looked and smelled incredible. I always keep in mind the way a dish will present, so I included the sweet potato and carrots primarily for extra color. I was surprised that the rutabaga turned a nice golden color. This made for an excellent side dish, but was hearty enough to eat as a meal.
Roasted Root Vegetables with Fennel (you can use a combination of whichever root vegetables are on hand)
1 medium rutabaga, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 1 large turnip. peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 2 medium parsnips, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 1 sweet potato(or yam), peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 3 medium carrots, peeled and chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 1 small sweet onion, peeled and chopped into strips 1 fennel bulb, chopped into 1/2 inch cubes 3 Tbsp Olive oil 2 tsp fennel seeds 1 Tbsp ground Sage 1 Tbsp ground coriander Sea Salt and cracked pepper to taste
• Pre-heat the oven to 400 degrees •Toss everything together in a mixing bowl •Pour ingredients in a roasting pan, place in oven •Roast in oven- uncovered, for 40 minutes, tossing everything around every 15 minutes •Serve hot and enjoy!