Rooting for Root Vegetables!

Who doesn’t love root vegetables?! They’re part of the reason I love this time of year, along with cold weather, snow, fireplace fires, and curling up with a good book while my root vegetables simmer in a good soup or stew recipe.

Root vegetables may look a bit boring, but they’re low in calories, sodium and fat, but high in protein, antioxidants, vitamins like A, Bs, C, D and K as well as potassium. They each have their own distinct flavor and can be consumed in a variety of ways. Whether served chopped or mashed, you can season them very little with just salt and pepper and olive oil, or you can add a variety of herbs to enhance their flavors. Try to take advantage of these powerhouse vegetables during the winter months by adding them to soups and stews, side dishes and juicing – your organs will love you for it.

Some favorite roots are:

1) Turnips

2) Sweet potatoes and yams (a bit sweeter than the sweet potato)

3) Beets

4) Parsnips

5) Jicama

Most of these can be cut into ‘fries’, seasoned and broiled, for a healthier version of white potato french fries. The greens of all of all root vegetables can be served as a side dish – just substitute spinach or kale recipes with root greens. The beet is a favorite juiced along with other green vegetables, and jicama, while excellent cooked, is most popular in the raw food communities uncooked.

All root vegetables should be chosen when firm, without wrinkles or sprouts shooting out of them.