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Need more creative root veg strategies


dtremit
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So I think we are approaching "too much of a good thing" territory — between the last few distributions of our regular CSA, and a root vegetable CSA we signed up for, we are positively drowning in roots. Carrots, beets, turnips, rutabagas, daikon — you name it. (Also have a lot of potatoes, squash, cabbage, and leeks on hand, but those I have a lot more ideas for.)

 

I feel like my repertoire for a lot of these is really limited; a few go-to dishes, mostly sides, salads, and quick pickles. I found this lovely thread on carrots which should be a help, but really, I could use some suggestions for the other stuff. How do I center these ingredients in a way that really makes them the star of a meal (and gets through them a little faster)?

 

(The only thing I would probably rule out is juicing; we aren't vegetable juice people.)

 

I'm particularly struggling with the beets — I love them (cooked, not raw) but I feel like I work through them really slowly.

 

Here is a picture of roots from our root CSA farm for inspiration.

 

unnamed-6-scaled.jpg

Edited by dtremit (log)
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40 minutes ago, dtremit said:

I'm particularly struggling with the beets — I love them (cooked, not raw) but I feel like I work through them really slowly.

A fridge without pickled beets is like a day without sunshine!

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

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Daikon: emergency kimchi (uses a little bit of carrot, too).

 

Daikon & carrot: quick pickle for Vietnamese-style sandwiches, e.g., tuna sandwich.

 

Beets: cooked via any method, vinaigrette dressing.

 

Carrots: "roasted" on a sheet pan with olive oil and salt.

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Carrot hot dogs - assume we are not going there right?!

 

We like bagna cauda and enjoy the root vegetables both boiled or roasted. Roasted adds another layer of texture and flavor. The roots that work raw are fun alongside their cooked brethren.  

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Beet borscht? I like making soup with roasted/pureed root vegetables, adds more depth of flavor. Chips - slice very thin and fry (a la Terra Chips).

Beets can be used in chocolate cake, carrot/parsnip cake...

Edited by BeeZee
another idea (log)
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"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast" - Oscar Wilde

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Thanks, some very good ideas here! @Paul Bacino — the pave would work really well given the mix of stuff we have, and I'm sure I could double the batch and freeze portions of it in foil to have an easy side later.

 

And I should lean more into soups and stews — the ones mentioned here and others. I'm just remembering now that I saw a recipe for a Japanese curry with daikon the other day that would probably be quite adaptable to some of the other stuff we have on hand.

 

@Anna N — I don't know why I don't always have pickled beets around; they'd last way longer than plain roasted ones, and still be ready to eat. I think we eat beets less because by the time I think to cook them, everything else is close to ready. Pickled turnips and do chua were already on my list so it's a logical addition.

 

@heidih do you have a bagna cauda recipe you particularly like? I know what it is but I am ashamed to admit I have never actually eaten or made it. You can keep the carrot hot dog recipe 🤣

 

@BeeZee I probably should break down and look at the recipes for red velvet cake that involve beets. My better half loves red velvet and we have a lot of cream cheese in the fridge.

Edited by dtremit (log)
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12 minutes ago, dtremit said:

.

 

@heidih do you have a bagna cauda recipe you particularly like? I know what it is but I am ashamed to admit I have never actually eaten or made it. You can keep the carrot hot dog recipe 🤣

.

First on pickled beets - i keep them always around. Just cooked how you like and a pour over of vinegar with a much sugar as you prefer. Hey you have a ton you can experiment. I keep it simple with just rough smashed black pepper, onion, salt of course, and something in the anise world like star anise or clove. 

 

Bagna cauda - we wing it. This is close to our outline. Good bread too please ;)  https://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/bagna-cauda-2827 Pre CV19 a great gathering thing. Still works in smaller quantities.

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Soups for sure.  The Turnip Soup with Turnip Greens in Deborah Madison's Greens Restaurant Cookbook is easy and excellent.  I've made it with an abundance of CSA radishes, too.  If you add a snip of beet root, it will come out a pretty pink, otherwise beige.  

Not sure if you have Vivian Howard's Deep Run Roots but it has good chapters on beets and rutabagas.  The bacon-roasted rutabagas that she serves with pork tenderloin is really good as are the basic stewed rutabaga.  I enjoyed the rutabaga relish, too. I haven't tried the Duck, Date & Rutabaga Potpie with Duck-Fat Biscuit Crust but it sounds excellent. 

In the beet chapter, the roasted beet salad with orange segments and pecans nestled on a buttermilk blue cheese dressing is a favorite of mine. The beet tzatziki that goes with the grilled lamb kebabs is delicious and goes with other things as well. 

 

In Indian-ish, Priya Krishna has a really good Mustard Seed and Curry Leaf Carrot Salad.  If you julienne the carrots instead of grating them, this salad will keep in the fridge and add a fresh crunch to plates for a week, kinda along the same lines as the sort of carrot/daikon quick pickle that @MokaPot mentioned but with a different flavor profile.

In general, Indian cookbooks are a good resource for pickle-y/salad-ish/chutney sorts of things to make and I find that root vegetables can often be interchanged or combined.  I liked the Beetroot and Green Chili Pickle that I made from Mowgli Street Food and can imagine it working with other vegetables as well. 

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Rearrange and take more pix?

 

The French salads as I've mentioned before: Carottes Rapée. And if you have celeriac...

 

Radishes are certainly nice sautéed in good butter.

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Mitch Weinstein aka "weinoo"

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This may be too close to juicing and I know you said you weren't into that, but when I was doing breakfast smoothies, cooked beets were a regular.  With a fistful of raw cranberries for tartness, a few other berries for flavor.  Whatever else you like. 

 

At the other end of the beverage spectrum, Lindsay Jean Hard's book, Cooking with Scraps makes a very pretty tequila infused with beet peels and trimmings.  It picks up an earthy flavor and a bit of sweetness from the beets and is quite sippable as is.  The book uses it in a beet peel margarita

IMG_2009.thumb.jpeg.efbba23ca3ea03e7419203bdf227f9e2.jpeg 

 

Another almost alarmingly colored beet dish is the Bright-pink pasta from Anna Jones in A Modern Cook's Year.  You sauté grated beets and capers in olive oil, then add drained pasta and some of it's starchy water to bring it all together.  A sprinkle of dill, squeeze of lemon and maybe some goat cheese or feta and you're done.

IMG_1893.thumb.jpeg.038a724e6e8a2b91bc18a286299cb8a3.jpeg 

 

Finally, there a good recipe for Puréed beets with yogurt & za'atar from Ottolenghi's Jerusalem.  I cut the date syrup back by half and like to swirl the beet and yogurt mixtures in the serving bowl rather than mixing to a uniform pink. 

IMG_5554.thumb.jpg.4499e9a7b3485d6000b9c5373da624f6.jpg

 

Beet salads that I really like are the Carrot and Beet Slaw with Pistachios and Raisins from Josh McFadden's Six Seasons, the Christmas Lima Beans & Quinoa with Beets & Avocado from Rancho Gordo's Heirloom Beans and Beets with Lentils and Yuzu from Ottolenghi's Plenty More.  The beans or lentils make the last two suitable as a vegetarian main dish salads.

IMG_5578.thumb.jpg.0541d505c04c45c949ecc35ee3f24e36.jpg

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This is great for leftover squash

 

Vanilla Pumpkin Jam

 

Butternut Squash          900g    Peeled and chunked

Sugar                530g

OJ                120ml

Lemon Juice            60ml

Vanilla Bean            ½ ea


 

  • Steam Butternut squash until cooked through about 20 minutes. Then puree in robot coupe

  • Combine Sugar, OJ, lemon juice, Vanilla bean to heavy rondeau and cook until sugar dissolves.

  • Add Butternut puree and cook over med heat for 10 minuted or until thickened and holds its shape. 

 

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13 hours ago, scubadoo97 said:

I’m a roasting fan.   I’ve been roasting cut carrots, parsnips and mini potatoes on a pretty regular basis. Maybe once a week at least.   Just love it 
 

Never get board 


Agree.   Beets in particular roasted at 425 are fantastic for a number of applications.

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Wow, some fantastic inspiration piling up here! I took @weinoo's suggestion and made carottes râpées today from David Lebovitz's recipe, which seems a very efficient way of using up carrots. (Picture was from the farm, my roots are stuffed in very unglamorous bags in the back of the fridge.)

 

Last night we had roasted orange and purple carrots with a bit of leftover tahini sauce (along with some roasted kabocha wedges with maple and sesame oil).


Next on my short list are the do chua and pickled beets, when we clear a bit of Christmas food out of the fridge.

 

@blue_dolphin — those are some very creative picks, thank you! I honestly had never thought of using *roasted* beets in smoothies. My dislike of beet juice is mostly an indirect aversion to the flavor of raw beets, which I have never been able to get past. But I could imagine roasted beets pairing beautifully with a lot of stuff (and we have some forlorn frozen berries and always lots of yogurt on hand).

The pureed beets is also a great idea with ingredients we always have — fortuitously we pick up our root veg CSA at a local vegetarian restaurant with a heavily middle eastern focus. So I may save that one for next pickup when we can get some good hummus and fresh pita to go alongside. I have actually made that dish from Indianish, liked it, and promptly forgot about it; it would go well with those two, too. 
Anna Jones has posted that beet pasta on Instagram and frankly yours looks way tastier! I like the addition of (what I'm assuming are) breadcrumbs.

 

@AAQuesada that jam sounds like a lovely use of the one sugar pumpkin I have been trying to figure out how to use; I haven't wanted to bake a whole pie this year! 
 

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