Roasted Root Vegetable Fries

 

 

Roasted Root Vegetable Fries
Yield: 4-6 servings

Ingredients:
2 lbs of root vegetables: beets, rutabagas, carrots, celeriac, parsnips, potatoes, turnips, sweet potatoes
2 Tbsp. olive oil (or canola)
2 cloves garlic, minced (or ½ tsp. garlic powder)
salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:
1. Preheat oven to 425 °F.
2. Scrub veggies—you don’t need to peel them, just trim off any rough ends.
3. Cut veggies into thin strips of uniform size.
4. In a bowl combine oil and garlic (or other seasoning, see ideas below).
5. Lay the veggie strips out in a single layer on baking sheets. Arrange vegetables roughly in groups, since their cooking times may vary slightly and you may want to remove some before others
6. Pour the oil mixture over the veggie strips and toss to coat. Sprinkle with salt and pepper, if desired.
7. Bake for ~45 minutes or until tender and crispy. Toss at least once with a spatula to ensure even roasting.

Further seasoning ideas:
-Minced garlic and finely chopped rosemary
-Minced garlic and oregano
-Coconut oil (instead of olive), chopped pumpkin seeds, garlic and sea salt
-Fresh rosemary and thyme with salt and pepper

Roasted Carrot-Parsnip Soup

 

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Roasted Carrot-Parsnip Soup
Courtesy of Sara Quessenberry, Real Simple
 Ingredients
  • 1 pound carrots, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1/2 pound parsnips, peeled and cut into 1/2-inch rounds
  • 1 yellow onion, quartered
  • 5 tablespoons olive oil
  • kosher salt and pepper

Directions

  1. Heat oven to 400° F.
  2. In a large roasting pan, combine the carrots, parsnips, onion, 3 tablespoons of the oil, 1½ teaspoons salt, and ¼ teaspoon pepper. Spread the vegetables in an even layer and roast, stirring occasionally, until tender and golden brown, about 45 minutes.
  3. Meanwhile, arrange the bread slices on a baking sheet and brush with the remaining oil. During the last 10 minutes of roasting time, toast the slices until crisp.
  4. Transfer the vegetables to a blender and purée with 3 cups water, adding more water if necessary, ¼ cup at a time, until smooth. Rewarm in a pot over medium-low heat, if necessary. Divide among individual bowls and serve with the olive oil toast.

Spring Freezer Cleanout: Turkey Pot Pie

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Earlier this week I joined Bethany Yon from the VT Department of Health on her show, What’s Cooking Rutland. The theme was cleaning out the freezer. Bethany and I took inventory of our freezers and were surprised by how much we found – especially in leftover fruits and vegetables from last year’s harvest.

Now is a good time to see what is hanging out in there and to start using up what you already have before the season really kicks off and you start buying more. It’s not a bad idea to clear out anything questionable either. Here’s a useful guide to reference while determining what may or may not be worth saving.

Fruits and vegetables, for instance, shouldn’t spend more than a year in your freezer.

We based the show’s menu around what we found. When I discovered green beans, kale, carrots, homemade chicken stock, herbs, and pie crust, a pot pie came to mind. Then Bethany told me she had turkey breast from Thanksgiving. Perfect.

I took the items out of the freezer earlier in the day to defrost and lightly pressed out some of the water that was left in some of the vegetables. While you could try making this without defrosting the vegetables (the meat, on the other hand, will definitely require a defrost period), you might end up with a pretty watery pie. It’s harder to drain out the excess liquid at that point.

While I worked on the pie, Bethany made the blueberry and maple syrup sorbet we posted last year and a refreshing strawberry rhubarb soup. I usually don’t like rhubarb, but that was good stuff.

The show will be airing all through April on PEG-TV and streaming on their site as well. Check it out. Here’s the recipe for the pot pie. Of course, you could use ingredients that haven’t been frozen as well.

Turkey Pot Pie

  • 1 medium onion, roughly chopped
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 3 Tbsp. butter
  • 3 Tbsp. flour
  • 3 cups stock
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked, cubed turkey (or chicken)
  • 3 cups mixed vegetables
  • 2-3 Tbsp. of your favorite herbs (such as thyme, rosemary, parsley, oregano), chopped
  • 1 or 2 sheets of pie crust, either homemade or store bought
  • 1 egg, beaten

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.

Melt the butter in a large pan over medium high heat. Add the onion and garlic and saute for a few minutes, until translucent. Stir in the flour and let cook for a minute, while moving around the pan, before pouring in the stock. Bring to a simmer for a couple of minutes and then add the meat, vegetables, and herbs. Simmer for 5 minutes until everything is heated through and the sauce has thickened. Taste and adjust seasoning, if needed.

If you’d like both a bottom and top crust to your pie, go ahead and spread one sheet of dough over the bottom of a pie plate. A casserole dish could work too, if desired. Ladle in the contents of the pan and then top with another sheet of dough. Crimp the edges of the dough if you’re looking to have a nice presentation, or if you’re too eager to bother, just make a few slits with a knife. Brush with the beaten egg, for a browner, crispier crust, place on a baking sheet, and slide into the oven.

Bake for about 45 minutes, until the crust is looking golden brown. Remove and let cool as long as you can before slicing up and digging in.

Root Salad

After doing quite a bit of research, I came  across a website that is extremely helpful for farm to school programs and healthy food tasting.  I recommend visiting Washington State’s Farm to School website and checking out their “Washington Grown Food Kit,” where you will find a number of links to vegetable and fruit nutrition and education facts, as well as recipes that are often split into appropriateness for schools, seniors, and child care.  This is where I found this mouth-watering root salad recipe that is perfect for preparing in the classroom or in your home kitchen. This recipe is adapted for a classroom size of 25! Each student would be able to try a 1/4 cup.

Ingredients: 1 pound Parsnips 1/2 pound Carrots 6 oz Beets 1 tbs Grated ginger 3 tbs Honey 3 tbs Fresh lemon juice 3 tbs Fresh orange juice 6 tbs Olive oil

Begin by cleaning and grating all vegetables and set aside.  Then, mix in the ginger, honey, fresh juices, and olive oil.  Combine the veggies into the homemade dressing and mix well.  Let stand for about one hour so that the vegetables can marinate.  Then serve and enjoy!

Pretty easy, huh?  – And a perfect recipe to do with students of all ages – knives aren’t necessary except to initially cut through the fruit (which an adult can surly handle before the salad preparation begins).  Also, using peelers to create ribbons of vegetables instead of graters can be a fun and safe way to get kids involved in the cooking. Adding raisins, cilantro, parsley, and/or scallions are other interesting and delicious variations to this recipe.

Happy Wednesday and remember to eat lots of vegetables !

Roasted Root Vegetables

Roasted Root Vegetables

Vegetables to roast (choose any combination of the following):

  • potatoes, unpeeled, scrubbed, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • sweet potatoes, scrubbed, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • celery root (celeriac), peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • beets, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • rutabagas, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • carrots, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • parsnips, peeled, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • onions, cut into 1-inch pieces
  • fennel bulbs, cored, cut into half-inch pieces

Add:

  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 10 garlic cloves, peeled
  • salt and pepper

Optional:

  • herbs, like thyme, marjoram, or rosemary
  • vinegar, like balsamic

Preparation:

Preheat to 400°F. Combine all remaining ingredients except garlic in very large bowl; toss to coat. Season generously with salt and pepper. Divide vegetable mixture between heavy baking sheets, if necessary. Roast 30 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add garlic cloves to baking sheet(s).  Continue to roast until all vegetables are tender and brown in spots, stirring and turning vegetables occasionally, about 45 minutes longer. (Can be prepared 4 hours ahead. Let stand on baking sheets at room temperature. Rewarm in 450°F oven until heated through, about 15 minutes.)  Transfer roasted vegetables to large bowl and then serve.

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