Roasted Parsnips and Sweet Potatoes with Caper Vinaigrette(from Plenty by Yotam Ottolenghi)
My current favorite cookbook is Yotam Ottolenghi’s book Plenty. Although Ottolenghi is not a vegetarian – the book is about beautiful, delicious vegetables. Many of the recipes include interesting ingredients used in ways you would not normally think of yourself. He’s a genius this guy. You will fall in love with this book. Every recipe I have made from this book is absolutely gorgeous and delicious. Honest. I have given countless copies of this book to my friends for gifts. Recently a colleague of mine – Caryn Espo – and I were talking about this book at a lawyer meeting (food is always more interesting than the law in my mind) and she asked if I had made the Roasted Parsnip and Sweet Potato with Caper Vinaigrette recipe (page 16) which I had not. She said it was wonderful and easy and so I came home and immediately read the recipe which sounded like a perfect Autumn recipe and the next day I got the ingredients and made it. Love. Perfect for autumn when parsnips and sweet potatoes abound. Everyone I’ve made ‘Parsnips and Sweet Potatoes’ for – friends and family alike – have uniformly loved it. Awe….
4 parsnips ( 1/12 lbs)
4 medium red onions
2 medium sweet potatoes
1 head of garlic, halved horizontally
30 cherry tomatoes
4 sprigs of thyme
2 sprigs of rosemary
2/3 cup olive oil
2 Tbsp lemon juice
4 Tbsp small capers (I use salt packed and then rise them well)
½ Tbsp maple syrup
½ tsp Dijon mustard
1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds (optional)
This is so easy…
Preheat oven to 375° F. Peel parsnips and cut into two or three segments, depending on their lengths. The segments should be about 2 inches long each. Then cut each segment into strips about ½” wide. In other words the pieces should be approximately 2 inches long and ½ inch wide.
Peel the onions and cut each into 6 wedges.
Place the parsnips and onions in a large mixing bowl and add ½ cup of olive oil, the thyme, rosemary, garlic, 1 tsp salt and some pepper. Mix well and spread out in a large roasting pan. Roast for about 20 minutes.
While the parsnips are cooking, trim both ends of the sweet potatoes. Cut them, with their skins on, width ways in half. Then cut each half into 6 wedges. Add the potatoes to the pan with the parsnips and onion and stir well. Return to the oven to roast for another 40-50 minutes.
When all of the vegetables are cooked through and have taken on a golden color, stir in the halved tomatoes. Roast for 10 minutes more. Meanwhile, whisk together the lemon juice, capers, maple syrup, mustard, remaining 2 Tbsp oil and ½ tsp salt.
Pour the dressing over the roasted vegetables as soon as you take them out of the oven. Stir well, then taste and adjust the seasoning. Scatter the sesame seeds over the vegetables if using them and serve at the table either in the roasting pan or another pretty platter.