The vegetables to be found at the Winter Farmers’ Markets encompass a range of flavors appealingly different than those of summer. Many of these vegetables really come into their own once the weather turns, becoming sweeter and more complex with colder temperatures. Roasting them is a simple way to take advantage of these characteristics and explore the incredible variety available this season.
Roasted Root Vegetables
- 4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into ½-inch round slices
- 1 small celery root (also known as celeriac), peeled, quartered, and cut into ½-inch slices
- 4 medium parsnips, peeled and cut into ½-inch round slices
- Cooking oil
- Salt and pepper
1. Preheat oven at 400°F.
2. Toss cut vegetables, using hands, with enough cooking oil to thoroughly coat vegetables lightly.
3. Spread out on a low-sided baking sheet or pan. Pan should be large enough to hold the vegetables in a single layer.
4. Roast about 20 minutes, stirring or turning pieces 2 or 3 times to cook evenly. Vegetables should be tender and browned when done.
5. Season with salt and pepper to taste. Makes 4 servings.
Variations: This recipe offers an introduction to the basics of roasting vegetables. You may vary the combination of root vegetables, including rutabagas, turnips, kohlrabi, or potatoes. To prepare, cut the vegetables into roughly the same size and shape to ensure even cooking. Vegetables may also be tossed with fresh or dried herbs before roasting.
Improvisation: My last batch was made up of 4 different varieties of potatoes (Desiree, Nicola, Carola, and fingerlings) cut into large chunks, a couple of onions peeled and quartered, and some pork sausages (casing lightly pricked) tossed in with oil, rosemary and thyme. Cook at a slightly higher temperature of 425°F and for a longer time of 30 to 40 minutes, or until done, for an easy one pan meal.
Notes: Roasting vegetables isn’t limited to root vegetables, most any vegetable may be prepared this way. “The Art of Simple Food” by Alice Waters, from which this recipe is adapted, offers many tips on roasting vegetables in general. ”The Roasted Vegetable” by Andrea Chesman contains a useful roasting chart, giving times and temperatures for specific vegetables.