Roasted Root Vegetables w/ Fennel Balsamic

Consider this a “Choose Your Own Adventure”-meets-“Fussy Rules Are For Fussy People” kind of recipe.

Let’s keep this one simple! No finicky measurements. The key to making a variety of roasted root vegetables in a single batch, is to chop your vegetables to the same size. This assures that the different vegetables will cook evenly.*

The other guideline is, if you’re going to include a more tender vegetable like bell peppers or onions, don’t add them to the baking sheet until the end of your cooking time.

Which vegetables? You can use carrots, potatoes, sweet potatoes, beets, parsnips, carrots, turnips – really, any root vegetable that you and your family enjoy! Just remember to dice up those veggies to about the same size.

Toss it. We’re going to drizzle some olive oil over the vegetable pieces, and toss the veggies. [Note: No. Don’t “toss” them, like “tossing” them, that would be silly. And messy. Just mix them around with a big spoon so that the olive oil and the vegetables get all stirred around.]  Are all the pieces coated in beautiful olive oil? Yes? Awesome! If not, go ahead and add some more oil and toss again.

Time to add more flavor. Which flavor sounds good to you today? Any of the spice blends from the Veg Out gift box work great here, but Za’atar is my [Chris’s] personal favorite. Sprinkle a little seasoning on the coated vegetables. Toss. If some sides of the oiled veggies don’t have any spices on them, add a little more seasoning and toss again.

Now we roast! Finally! Use a big enough rimmed baking sheet or tray, so that the veggie chunks aren’t overlapping or crowded. If the pieces touch, they tend to steam instead of roast, and they won’t develop a nice roasted crust and texture. To minimize cleanup time later, you might want to line the rimmed baking sheet with a piece of parchment paper before arranging the coated vegetables on the pan, but that’s totally optional. To facilitate even roasting, toss the veggies halfway through cooking to make sure they remain coated in oil. Cook until a fork pierces easily and remove from oven.

How hot? How long? For root vegetables, roasting at 425°F for about 30 to 45 minutes, depending on how small you cut the veggie chunks.

Toss those roasted veggies with a light drizzle of Fennel Balsamic. Serve. Devour. Enjoy.


*(Imagine roasting a huge baking potato alongside a single Brussels Sprout, let’s say, 45 minutes at 450°F. You’d end up having the potato be not-quite-cooked in the middle, and the Brussels Sprout would be overdone all to heck. It’s an extreme example, but maybe useful to keep in mind.)