Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Just Beet It

Last night we hit a milestone.  I made the first meal my husband didn't like.  He wanted me to tell you that he had an 'almond butter and fig preserve' sandwich instead.  He doesn't want you to judge him and he doesn't want you to think he's a picky eater--he's just not that into parsnips (or other root vegetables).

The inspiration for this meal came from a potluck party where a friend made a green salad with beets.  I've never had a beet.  When I think of beets, I think of Doug Funnie and Dwight Schrute.  Someone told me they tasted like grass.  Needless to say, I was terrified.  Then someone else told me they would turn my pee pink; I thought this was very helpful information seeing as how I imagine my pee would be pink if I were bleeding internally.  So I had a chunk of beet.  It was not amazing and it did not suck.  But it was so pretty I decided to try my hand with beets.

[I have to interrupt this post because someone is playing Wilson Phillips and all I can think of is Bridesmaids....okay, I have very seriously air-drummed and mimed this song and am ready to continue posting.  I realize I did not have to tell you this, but I did anyway.  Get over it.]

If you've never handled a beet before, I recommend checking out this page.  They can get a little messy, but now my cutting board is pink for Valentine's Day.  I've also never cooked with turnips; Real Simple featured them this month, so I thought I'd throw them into the mix.  And then, there's the dreaded parsnip (which I happen to like).  Parsnips look like elderly carrots: skinnier, wrinkly, gone gray, with a slightly withered look.

With minimal seasoning, this dish lets the taste of each individual vegetable shine through.  If, however, you have picky eaters around, you could whip up some Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette and toss with the veggies for a sweet tangy finish.

Roasted Root Vegetable Medley
This was real easy to make...you just cut everything up and put it in the oven and fuggettabowdit. You can cut the vegetables into matchsticks, cubes, chunks, or all of the above--it's your work of art!

8-12 slender carrots, peeled and cut
3 medium turnips, cut
4-6 parsnips, peeled and cut
3-4 small beets, trimmed, peeled and cut
1 medium sweet potato, cut
2 T olive oil
3-4 sprigs of fresh rosemary
Salt & pepper to taste

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.  Toss cut veggies with oil and season with salt & pepper.  Spread vegetables and rosemary in thin layer onto large baking sheet.  Roast for 40 min or until golden on the edges, stirring halfway through.  Toss with vinaigrette for extra pizazz. 

Maple-Dijon Vinaigrette
A refreshing take on honey mustard.

3 T Apple cider vinegar
2 tsp good quality maple syrup
3tsp Dijon mustard

Whisk all ingredients until combined.

And I would like to point out that I have kept my resolution of blogging twice a month--so far!  Let me know your favorite root veggie.


  1. I love turnips and parsnips! But, I guarantee you my husband would have the PB&J...or AB&P. :-) Thanks for the ideas!