Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Braised Root Vegetables with Garlic Oil

For the last 4 years, the main acoustics in my life have been both the voices of my sons and their favorite musical group, the Wiggles. If you have actually listened to this Australian based musical extravanganza, you will well understand why I relish the moments that I am alone in the car and can set my IPhone to play podcasts. And when I do, I inevitably turn to the Splendid Table. Crafted by Lynne Rossetto Kasper, it includes interviews with chefs and food critics, news about the food world as well as restaurant recommendations by the lively duo of Michael and Jane Stern of RoadFood. Lynne Rossetto Kasper, though, is also the author of two great cookbooks and is herself talented at both giving callers assistance with their meals and sharing her own cooking tricks. In fact, each week I get her "Splendid Table" newsletter that includes some meal that can easily be made in less than an hour (or even 30 minutes).

Recently, she shared her creation of this dish. She didn't give recipe amounts, but the dish sounded so easy, so delicious, and just so perfect, that I had to give it a try. And I am already making it for the second time in two weeks.

This dish is so adaptable. You can use any root vegetables that you have. You can mash them up or leave it chunky. It could be a vegetarian main dish or a side. In fact I loved it with cut up chicken on top. It tasted like an instant shepard's pie.

So, in honor of Lynne Rossetto Kasper, here is my attempt to put her idea into a recipe.

Braised Root Vegetables with Garlic Oil

Any assortment of root vegetables (such as carrots, parsnips, turnips, rutabagas, potatoes, celery root), peeled and sliced thinly
One sliced onion
3-5 garlic cloves, chopped
Olive Oil

Boil a very large pot of salted water. Toss the root vegetables and the onion in the boiling water. Boil for about 10 minutes until just tender.

In the meantime, film a large skillet with olive oil. Heat it on medium heat. When the oil is hot, place in the chopped garlic cloves. Add enough water to just cover and braise the garlic. When the vegetables are done, lift them out of the water and place directly into the garlic/water mixture. Turn the heat off, cover and let sit for at least 10 minutes to absorb the garlic oil.

You can use the remaining boiled water as a stock for soup.

To listen to the Splendid Table podcast, just click here.

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