Humble and Hearty, root vegetables are the earthiest of produce and can add a variety of colors and flavors to your fall meals. Low in fat and calories, many roots serve as good sources of fiber which we all know is favorable for digestion, preventative for disease like heart disease and cancer, and also helps control blood sugar levels which is beneficial for diabetes and weight management. A wealth of other nutrients also flow from this variety of veggies, including: vitamin C, folate, vitamin A, potassium and various phytonutrients, which are nutrients that lie within the color of foods.
Some of these roots include: parsnips, turnips, carrots, radishes, jicama, beets, rutabaga, daikon, salsify, burdock root, parsley root and celeriac.
Knowing how to prepare these vegetables is often times the biggest struggle when recommending adding these into ones diet. While some selections like carrots, radishes and beets are more familiar options, other like jicama, rutabaga and parsnips tend to leave people at a loss for ideas in the kitchen.
Some of these can be eaten raw, thinly sliced and served with a low-fat dip, in a crunchy sandwich or shredded into a creative slaw. Others are best when roasted, baked, steamed, sautéed, fried or pureed. Adding a splash of flavor such as vinegar or citrus often compliments flavor.
Here is a recipe for a creative way to eat rutabaga…in a FRY form! Who doesn't love FRIES!?
Salt and Vinegar Rutabaga Fries with Old Bay Dipping Sauce
- 1 ½ lb rutabaga, peeled and cut into ½" thick wedges
- 2 cups white vinegar
- ½ c water
- 2 tsp kosher salt
- ½ c ketchup
- 1 tsp Old Bay seasoning
- 1 tsp hot sauce
Place rutabaga wedges into a large heat safe bowl with a tight fitting lid. In a medium saucepan, combine 2 cups of the vinegar, water and 2 teaspoons of salt. Bring to a boil over a high flame. Remove from heat and pour over prepared rutabaga. Secure lid onto bowl and store in the refrigerator for 2-4 hours.
Preheat oven to 425 F. Coat two 12 x 16 inch baking sheets with non-stick cooking spray and set aside. Drain rutabaga wedges in a large colander and spread evenly on prepared baking sheets. Bake for 25 minutes , flipping wedges halfway through. Meanwhile, combine all the sauce ingredients in a small bowl and set aside. Remove fries from oven and transfer to a large mixing bowl. Toss with remaining vinegar and salt. Transfer to a serving plate alongside dipping sauce.
Nutrition Information (per serving): 90 calories, 0g fat, 1000g sodium, 23g carbohydrate, 4g fiber, 16g sugar, 2g protein, 4% vitamin A, 70% vitamin C, 8% calcium, 4% iron
Original source: Food and Nutrition Magazine, November/December 2014