Thursday, January 24, 2013

roots and things

Love me some root vegetables!

Gourmet Today. A great cookbook. A great magazine, gone before its time. Stupid recession. Stupid death of magazines and newspapers.

This recipe is of course from a cookbook, but smart people know that pretty much every Gourmet recipe ever is on Epicurious.


So you chop up some parsnips. How do people feel about parsnips? My only exposure to them in my youth was when my grandmother would mash up some parsnips with her mashed potatoes, making a really complex,subtly sweet, utterly delicious dish. That being said, everything was peeled and boiled and combined with butter and whole milk, so it wasn’t the healthiest thing ever.

As an adult, though, I’ve gotten farmer’s market parsnips and loved their infinite capacity to caramelize and turn awesome. As they shine in this recipe.


Becauuuuuse… you make caramel! The only time I had made caramel prior to this was by accident. But when you do it on purpose, it’s a really simple science (maybe that’s why it’s so easy to do it by accident…)

Just put the sugar in the pan…


The center starts first


Then the runny part will slowly move outward


And slowly change color


Til definitively golden.


Then you add buttah!


Then the ‘nips.


Forgot my final picture, as I did in most of these. Oh well.

I popped open my Eating Well magazine (which is such a joy to receive every month. It has such a great mixture of recipes and food journalism. They have a really nice pulse on the whole slow food, locavore movement, and the dishes are always droolworthy). I saw a recipe for Miso butter braised turnips and went HECK yeah!


Root vegetables caramelize extra beautifully.


Not pictured is when you add the GREENS! This combo is wonnnderful- earthy miso, creamy butter, caramelized and sweet turnips, and then the slightly bitter and sharp turnip greens? Fab.u.lous.

Butternut squash and I are pals but one I roasted in pieces with spices just turned muuuuushy. So I pureed it. Then it wasn’t mushy, it was pureed but it was bland.

SO I topped it off with crumbled and sauteed Trader Joes’ soy chorizo.

That was SUCH a good decision!


Another initially disappointing root vegetable experience (… do I know how to start a paragraph or what?!) was when I tried to make a rutabaga-cardamom puree. It was a delicious sounding Epicurious recipe. It was totally my fault for it not turning out the right way- roasting, not boiling the veggies; using powdered, not pod, cardamom; overdoing the cardamom and then having to dilute the puree with carrots. Anyway, it was… a messy puree I had to put in stuff.

I put together a recipe for carrot rutabaga bread that was GREAT and made MANY loaves (ooh which reminds me, I still have one in my basement).

I also tried to make fritters.


Round one was a They turned to MUSHY MUSH MUSH.


I added more flour and then rolled each individual fritter in breadcrumbs. That worked wayy better.


Fritters just take so stinkin’ LONG to make! Good grief! You can only put four in the pan at a time which is a problem when your recipe turns out to make 20 or something!


Anyway, they tasted aight.

You can put applesauce on virtually anything and pretend it’s a latke.


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