Root vegetables are plants whose roots enlarge to the point that they are edible. Think carrots, parsnips (which look like white carrots) and turnips. Inexpensive and easily accessible in the colder months, root vegetables are nutritional powerhouses. Let’s give them one last shout-out before we move on to the peas and asparagus of Spring.
The list of ingredients in this dish may look intimidating, but the recipe comes together quickly once all of the chopping is done. Most of the time is oven-time, so you’ll be able to prepare the other parts of your meal while the vegetables are cooking.
A few tips:
- If possible, get carrots and parsnips that are roughly the same diameter. This will help ensure that everything cooks evenly. My carrots were tiny and my parsnips were huge, so my carrots were a little softer in the end than I wanted them to be.
- You can use either unsulphured or sulphured apricots. The unpleasant side effects of dried apricots aren’t as pronounced in this dish because the apricots are cooked.
- Eat leftovers for breakfast. Just call it root vegetable hash!
Root Vegetables with Apricots
Adapted from Diabetes Forecast
2 tablespoons coconut oil or olive oil
2 teaspoons ground cumin
1/2 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/2 teaspoon ground turmeric
4 large shallots, peeled and quartered
4 medium carrots, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
2 large parsnips, peeled and cut into 2-inch chunks
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
2 medium turnips, peeled and cut into 1-inch cubes
1-1/2 cups reduced-sodium chicken or vegetable stock
1/4 cup freshly squeezed orange juice
1/4 cup diced dried apricots
1 teaspoon honey
1/4 teaspoon coarse kosher salt
1/4 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1/4 cup finely chopped fresh parsley
Preheat oven to 350°F.
In a large ovenproof pot (like a Dutch oven), heat oil over medium heat. Add cumin, cardamom and turmeric. Cook, stirring, for about a minute.
Add shallots and sauté for about 3 minutes. Add carrots, parsnips, sweet potato and turnips. Cook, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are coated with spices and just starting to brown, about 10 minutes.
Add broth and orange juice, then bring to a boil. Remove from heat and place the pan in the oven. Bake for 40 minutes, until the vegetables are easily pierced with a fork. Stir in apricots and bake for another 10 minutes.
Remove from oven, drizzle with honey, season with salt and pepper and garnish with parsley.
Makes 8 servings
Per serving: 109 calories, 4g fat (3g sat), 0mg cholesterol, 208mg sodium, 18g carb, 4g fiber, 7g sugar, 1g protein
Nutritional Analysis: Turmeric is known for its anti-inflammatory effects. Root vegetables, while they contain carbohydrates, are slow to digest in the body. Sweet potatoes contain iron, magnesium, vitamin C, vitamin B6 and vitamin D.