I've always loved the beauty and rustic simplicity of root vegetables in photography. Their colors are as hearty as their flavor.
Whether puréed or roasted, they're savory, flavorful and filling on a winter day. Below I'm sharing a few tips on different ways I love to prepare them this time of year.
This soup is special because of its simplicity and the creative freedom it provides the chef. The root you use can be interchanged with any one of your favorites, as with the herbs and spices you add in. Choose your root and the herbs and spices to compliment it, and get cooking. Sauté your herbs, roots, salt and water (add celery if you'd like) until soft enough to then be puréed into a smooth consistency. One recipe, published by The New York Times, recommends then adding lemon juice (which really brightens the flavor), olive oil, more salt, and chili flakes or grated cheese. However you choose to flavor it, you'll have a hearty root veggie soup with a gentle flavor and a noticeable warmth.
Chunky Vegetable Soup
It's hard to get away from soup in the winter time, and that's not a bad thing. This soup provides a texture entirely opposite to the puréed soup above, but a warmth that's just as wonderful. I like to throw as many root veggies as possible into a traditional vegetable soup recipe, and then mix with fresh herbs from my garden and strong flavors like garlic or leeks. And, this is a great healthy alternative to some of the heavier, cream based soups that I (love and) often find as options out there.
Roasting root vegetables is quick, simple and liked by all. Evenly slice so they roast in a uniform consistency, drizzle with oil and kosher salt, and roast on the middle rack of your oven at 425 degrees, I usually switch to the top rack for the last 5-7 minutes for an extra crisp. As long as I roast a veggie, the kids like them!
Slice any number of your favorite root vegetables as thin as you can. Serve them up as a side dish or appetizer, alongside a little pot of room temperature butter (perhaps served in our butter pat dish) and a dish of black salt to sprinkle for garnish. One of my favorites to enjoy this way are radishes.