by Danea Mather | photography by August Nyson
After April showers, stroll through the fresh May air, wander down the aisles of your favorite farmers market. Nourish your body and mind with these early season root vegetables, which are sure to be seen popping up on produce stands near you!
Shoestring Parsnip Chips
With a dash of salt and a perfect crunch, these baked, crispy shoestrings are a satisfying alternative to potato chips.
2 or more large parsnips
2 tablespoons olive or avocado oil
1 teaspoons of salt (or more, to taste)
Optional: fresh chopped rosemary leaves
Preheat oven to 350 F. Trim parsnips and cut into 2-inch chunks, dividing the parsnip by thickness. Either with a sharp knife or a mandolin, cut parsnips into thin julienne strips, 2-inches tall, a quarter of an inch wide and as thin as is comfortable. (The thinner the cut, the crisper the chip.) Place all julienne strips into a mixing bowl, add oil and toss to coat. Add in salt and optional rosemary and toss again.
On a large baking sheet, lay out parsnips in a single layer. Place baking sheet in oven for approximately 40 minutes, checking for color after 20 minutes and rotating pan. Check again at 30 minutes for color and doneness.
When finished, parsnips will vary between dark golden brown to light tan. Remove from oven and let cool at least 5 minutes before serving.
Tahini Ginger Sauce
This all-purpose drizzle-on-everything sauce adds a zippy, creamy compliment to salads, bowls, sandwiches and more. It is even the perfect dip for freshly roasted parsnip shoestring chips!
Makes 1/2 cup of sauce
1/4 cup tahini
1/4 cup cool water
1/2 lemon, squeezed
1 tablespoon ginger, peeled and grated
1/2 tsp salt
Place all ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend on high until smooth. At first, the liquids will appear to be separating. This is natural when working with tahini. Continue to blend, and all will eventually come together.
Herb Roasted Carrot Salad
Tired of egg or chicken salad? Try this creative, veg-centric version that is packed with flavor. Use it in a sandwich, on a bed of greens, in a cored tomato or even just eat it with a spoon!
Makes approximately 4 large sandwiches
2 cups carrot, diced
1 cup celery, diced
1/4 cup red onion, finely diced
1/2 cup vegan mayo (or traditional mayo)
4 large medium sized fresh basil leaves
1/2 teaspoon herbs de Provence seasoning
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon. olive or avocado oil
Preheat oven to 350 F. Mix together diced carrots, oil, herbs de Provence seasoning and salt. Spread on a baking sheet and place in oven until carrots are fork tender, around 20 minutes. Allow carrots to cool at least 15 minutes.
Add roasted carrots, diced celery, and diced onion to a food processor. Pulse until all vegetables are minced and mixed together well. Transfer to a mixing bowl. Slice basil leaves into thin strips and add to mixing bowl. Add mayo to mixing bowl and gently fold all ingredients together. Be sure to mix very well. Cover and cool in refrigerator for at least an hour before serving.
Turmeric Springtime Veggie Bowl
Gorgeously colorful and simply in preparation, with roasted root vegetables, dark greens and gently spiced jasmine rice.
Makes 3 entrée-sized bowls
1 large parsnip
2 large carrots
1 tablespoon olive or avocado oil
1 cup jasmine rice
2 cups water
1 teaspoon turmeric
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
4-5 large leaves Swiss chard, de-stemmed and torn into 3-inch pieces
All-Purpose Tahini Ginger sauce
Preheat oven to 350 F. Trim parsnip and carrots and cut into long strips, lengthwise. For even roasting, carrots are best cut into 4 strips, and parsnips into 6 strips.
Coat vegetables in oil and lay out in a single layer on a baking sheet. Place baking sheet in oven until vegetables are fork tender, about 20-25 minutes.
While vegetables are roasting, prepare rice with water, turmeric and cinnamon in either a rice cooker or medium sized pot with a lid. When rice is nearly finished and vegetables are fork tender, bring a medium sized pot of water to a boil. Blanch Swiss chard in water for about 2 minutes and drain.
Divide turmeric rice into three large bowls. Alternately lay roasted carrots and parsnips around the edge of each bowl. Place a rounded bunch of Swiss chard leaves in the center of the roasted vegetables. Garnish generously with All-Purpose Tahini Ginger sauce and enjoy!