Tuesday, November 5, 2013


Your non-food gardening Thanksgiving guests might not jump up and down with excitement – or even RSVP – if you tell them that root vegetables will be the theme for this years’ side dishes!  So don’t tell them. Just tell them that they’re in for a sensory extravaganza! We’ll even throw in a butternut squash and a Swiss chard recipe.

 Curried Butternut Squash Soup 

This savory and creamy concoction is so delicious it will make you want to forgo the turkey and fixins and just dive in! You can substitute cooked pumpkin for the squash. An added bonus – it’s really simple!  

Pureed Parsnips

In the Grow It Eat It blog, Lena Rotenberg talks about My Love-hate relationship with parsnips.  Have YOU ever heard anyone rave about parsnips?  Neither have I.  So I figured they weren't worth even trying.  WRONG! I steamed a pound of them for 6 minutes or so, pureed them with a little butter, S&P, and ground coriander.  OMG! They were awesome with lamb chops. 
Recipe from Real Simple Magazine.
Consider serving them instead of mashed potatoes or at least substituting some in place of those same ole spuds.  They are about ½ as many calories and carbs as white potatoes-but don’t tell anyone until after the compliments start pouring in! 

Sweet n Spicy Roasted Sweet Potatoes  

Try this trick and you’ll never go back to sweet potato casserole unless it’s for dessert. Peel and cut sweet potatoes into long wedges or 2” chunks.  Toss with olive oil to cover and spread on foil covered cookie sheet. Liberally sprinkle on Montreal Steak Seasoning (no kidding!) and bake at 400 F for about 30-40 minutes or until lightly browned and caramelized. OMG, the combination of sweet, spicy, and tangy just can't be beat.

Swiss Chard Swiss Chard Spanakopita 

Just as tasty as spinach or better! Just about any type of greens can be used. Master Gardeners gave rave reviews to this recipe made with sweet potato leaves!

Beet Rosti with Rosemary (subtitle: the way I can make it without disaster)


Beets have made a big comeback in the last few years. No longer are they reserved for pickling and hard boiled eggs.  Beet Rosti is a thick pancake, cooked on a low temperature until the beet sugar caramelizes and a crunchy crust forms.  It doesn't exactly replace the cranberry relish on your Thanksgiving table but the color hits the mark.  Erica Smith adapted her recipe from Mark BittmanAnother option is Apple-Beet Salad. It is light and crisp with apples and spices.

Jon Traunfeld’s Sweet Potato Pie 

This pie is always a winner at HGIC. His secret is using Japanese red sweet potatoes. But don't let their name fool you. The flesh is yellow and very sweet.  It has a more substantial texture than typical supermarket sweet potatoes.

Buon appetito, Pilgrims!

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