Saturday, January 18, 2014

How to Peel a Rutabaga
Ah, the modest rutabaga.  Intimidating to some, considering the amount of people who have never had one.  The rutabaga is a root vegetable that is purple and yellow on color.  You may find they have a waxy peel, which is normal.  The rutabaga is usually sealed in a wax coating to help it stay fresh.  The wax doesn't hurt the vegetable, as you will be peeling it anyway.  When peeled it is a light yellow. 

Do not take a normal potato peeler to this vegetable.  It won't work well and will dull the blade of your peeler.  Just use a small, smooth-bladed paring knife to peel it in small increments, as shown in this picture.  Then you can cut it up into whatever size you like and cook it.  You can cube it, boil then mash it like potatoes or roast it with carrots. Ooh... I wonder if scalloped rutabaga wit chicken or ham would be good?

Roasted Root Vegetables
First thing I would like to say is, that when you cut into the rutabaga, it kind of smells like fresh broccoli or cauliflower.  When cooked it's actually a nice subtle flavor, like potatoes.

2 1/2 cups peeled and cut-up root vegetables
1-2 Tbsp oil
Salt and Pepper to taste

Simple recipe, yeah?  I used rutabaga and carrot for my version, but you could add or substitute potatoes, turnips, or parsnips.  It makes a great fall/winter side dish, since it uses veggies that are in season.

Preheat the oven to 400°F/204°C/Gas Mark 6.  Cut your vegetables into matchsticks like shown.  This will ensure a short baking time.  Toss the vegetables in your oil of choice.  No, not motor oil, don't be cute.  Just whatever light flavored cooking oil type stuff you have will do.  Then season with salt and pepper to your taste.  I usually use about 1/8 tsp salt and 1/4 tsp pepper.  Bake for about 20 minutes or until the veggies are fork tender.