Did you know that eating the right foods can help you feel more energetic and contribute to a good mood? According to Joy Bauer’s Food Cures, high quality carbohydrates and protein (found primarily in plant foods) contain vitamins, minerals and other nutrients that help contribute to a good mood. These include whole grains, legumes, vegetables and fruits. Among the high quality carbohydrate vegetables that Joy Bauer suggests can help boost your mood are vegetables that are in season right now — brussels sprouts, cabbage, beets, carrots, cauliflower, dark leafy green vegetables, sweet potatoes, winter squash, parsnips, and onions. Everyone can use a dish that boosts their mood, right?
Fortunately, my CSA Box has been filled with high quality carbohydrate vegetables lately (carrots, beets, sweet potatoes, winter squash, onions, brussels sprouts, cabbage, kale), including one lone celeriac or celery root.
Celeriac is a gnarly looking root, full of crags and crannies, not the prettiest vegetable I’ve ever seen. I wonder how anyone even thought it was edible based on looks alone. But then, I’ve learned not to judge anything or any person by their exterior…it’s the inside that counts.
Celeriac, also known as celery root, is not only high in vitamin K, but is also a good source of vitamin C, vitamin B6, phophorus, potassium, manganese and dietary fiber. See, you really can’t judge a book by its cover. This ugly vegetable is chock full of vitamins and minerals.
I reached out to my facebook friends and asked what to do with this lone knob of celeriac? The two most popular ideas were to serve this vegetable mashed like potatoes, or roasted. Since I had such a large assortment of root vegetables (celeriac, carrots, sweet potatoes, red and yellow beets, onions), an acorn squash, and some fresh sage and thyme on hand, I decided to go down the roasting route.
My kids love Roasted Cauliflower and Potatoes, and they’ve had Roasted Broccoli and Cherry Tomatoes and Roasted Brussels Sprouts before, so figured if I tossed an assortment of vegetables together, they’d be bound to like some of them. I knew they liked carrots, sweet potatoes, beets and acorn squash, but they had never tried celeriac, so I was curious to see whether they would pick out this new vegetable. That’s one thing I’ve really loved about joining a CSA this year…we have been coerced into trying a wider variety of vegetables than I typically would buy at the supermarket or farmer’s market. Since I don’t get to choose what comes in my CSA Box, and I hate throwing any food out, my family has eaten more vegetables this season than in years past.
This recipe is so easy, I almost wasn’t going to post it, but it came out so pretty, I just wanted to share it with you. You can use any assortment of root vegetables and any winter squash varieties. Brussels sprouts would also be nice. I actually got some brussels sprouts in my CSA Box, but they were so tiny that I was afraid they would be overcooked by the time the other vegetables were done. The trick is to make sure all the vegetables are roughly the same size so they cook in the same amount of time. Just a few glugs of olive oil, some sprigs of fresh thyme and sage (dried would be fine) thrown on top, a few shakes of salt and pepper, and a drizzle or two of maple syrup, and you can have this gorgeous jewel-toned dish of fresh roasted vegetables on your table in no time. In fact, I think I will be adding this to my holiday menu, perfect for entertaining a large group of guests over the upcoming holidays.
Roasted Root Vegetables
You want to have about 9 cups of vegetables in total. Roasting vegetables sweetens them, so the maple syrup is strictly optional. I just drizzled some on to make them more kid-friendly. Some balsamic vinegar would also be nice with these roasted vegetables. Feel free to use whatever proportions of root vegetables and winter squash you have on hand.
- 2 carrots peeled, cut into 1/2" chunks
- 1 celeriac peeled, cut into 1/2" chunks
- 2 beets peeled, cut into 1/2" chunks
- 1 sweet potato peeled, cut into 1/2" chunks
- 1/2 butternut squash peeled, cut into 1/2" chunks
- 1 onion peeled, sliced
- 4 fresh thyme sprigs
- 4 fresh sage leaves
- 1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil
- sea salt to taste
- black pepper to taste
- maple syrup to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Cut up all the root vegetables and squash into approximately equal size pieces. I cut them into roughly 1/2" pieces (except the beets which I sliced thinner since they seem to take longer to get tender). Put root vegetables, squash and onion in a large bowl.
Add olive oil, sage, and thyme to the bowl. Season to taste with salt and pepper. Toss well to coat all the vegetables.
Spread vegetables on a parchment paper lined baking sheet in a single layer.
Bake 30-40 minutes until tender.
Drizzle with maple syrup, to taste.
Parsnips and acorn squash or other winter squash would be nice too.