Friday, 21 November 2014

I'm rooting for ROOTS

Recipe: Maple-roasted roots

Time taken: 1 hour

Ingredients: 2 carrots, 2 parsnips, 6 shallots, 1 tablespoon of oil, 1 tablespoon of maple syrup, salt & pepper (Plus, I served mine with stuffing, so if you want this too you’ll need some stuffing mix).


Evening readers,

Have you got that Friday feeling? It’s the end of the week! THE WEEKENDDD. If you’re a student like me, that doesn’t really mean anything! In fact, I’ve had no lectures today so really it’s been the weekend all day already? But anywayyy, we’re celebrating the fact that the weekend’s come!

Tonight in our house everything’s very cosy. It’s lovely. The girliest house ever just gained another girl! This weekend we’ve got my flatmate’s friend visiting from London, bringing lots of gossip and chatter up to the north with her. Earlier I valiantly finished transcribing my seventh dissertation interview recording. Then I caught the boiler in a good mood and had the treat of a loooooooooong hot shower. And I caught up on The Fall (BBC TV drama that is currently GRIPPING me and most of my family, it’s getting SO TENSE we love it). And I had a seriously good tea. So good.

So good I’m BLOGGING ABOUT IT FOR YOU! That’s right, today I’m taking the time to share with you all how you can cook up your very own… maple roasted roots! Whooooo.

So, I can barely type this without déjà vu, but this evening… I took out the Morrison’s Christmas Magazine people.  I ONCEMORE leafed through its festive pages. And I wasn’t all that hungry yet so I decided that this was the night for a recipe that took its sweet time in the oven.
So this is a recipe where you throw together three different wintry vegetables and roast them together in the oven. What makes this recipe so special is that Morrison’s somehow discovered that if you roast them in oil and ALSO MAPLE SYRUP something just magical happens in the oven. I swear, these veg don’t taste like veg they’re so good! It’s like this recipe puts veg back on the map. Plus, it’s so seasonal and English! It tastes like you’re eating somewhere in the country, nestled amongst a bush of brambles, with a host of woodland creatures. Setting the scene for an almighty M&S advert.

So, planning ahead I bought the ingredients for this recipe when I did my last big food shop. They’re all really simple ingredients, easy and cheap to get in the end. Readers, I say ‘in the end’ because first there was some major confusion over what a shallot is. This is very embarrassing to admit, following the whole anchovy-artichoke palaver earlier this week, but AGAIN I confused a vegetable with a fish. Literally, I don’t know how but I thought shallots meant scallops, readers. I’m the worst vegetarian ever. I was all 'eugh fish in with the roasted veg?’ and my flatmates were all ‘err how are you so blonde??’. So, I learned something this week. I can report that shallots are a vegetable and I’ve eaten them now! They’re tiny onions and they taste good everyone. :)

Want to get your woodland on? Or maybe don’t believe me about the earth-moving powers of this dish??? Taste for yourself in just ten easy steps…

1. Heat your oven to 200˚C.

ChefBeHere Top Tip: Have a tissue at the ready! Shallots a bloody powerful things and your eyes are going to be streaming pretty soon. Brace yourself.

2. Use a sharp knife to chop the tops and the bottoms off your carrots, parsnips and shallots. Then use a vegetable peeler to remove the peel the carrots and parsnips. After this, use your hands to pull off the flaky outer layers of your shallots. Throw away, recycle or feed to the birds all your peelings.
3. Use your sharp knife to chop your shallots in half. Dry your eyes. Then slice your carrots and parsnips in half long ways, and cut them up into bite-sized chunks.
4. Tip all of your veg into a roasting tin. Drizzle with a generous tablespoon of vegetable oil and an even more generous tablespoon of maple syrup. Use your hands to jumble up all the veg so that they all get a good covering of oil and syrup. You shouldn’t be able to see any dry veg!

5. Wash/lick your hands clean and then sprinkle your veg with a little salt and a little pepper. Morrisons call this ‘seasoning to taste’ but I don’t know about the benefits of tasting raw, oily veg. So perhaps just judge by eye.
6. Safely transport your veg to the oven and set a timer for 40 minutes from now.

7. I wanted stuffing with my veg to make this meal a proper filler upper, so I set about making this! I set the kettle on to boil. Judging the amounts by eye really, I took about 4 tablespoons of stuffing mix and put it in a bowl. Then I added around 100ml of boiling water to the mix and gave it a good stir up. I put a plate over the bowl to cover it, and left my stuffing alone for a couple of formative minutes. Then I took a little ovenproof ramekin and spooned my stuffing into this, podging it down so that it all fit in. I dotted a few small bits of butter on top and, with 25 minutes left on the timer, added the stuffing to the oven.
8. Now you can do your dishes and have a bit of a break! Get a beverage and hunt for something good on TV. Spread the word to flatmates about what you’re cooking today. Snapchat your veg through the oven door and make a few course mates jealous.

9. When your 40 minutes is up, safely take your vegetables and your stuffing out of the oven!

10. Dish them up onto a warmed plate and tuck in. :)

Hey presto! You can enjoy something like this!
With minimal effort on your part you’ve produced something spectacularly British, wonderfully healthy and splendidly scrumptious. And with that Canadian twist, the maple syrup, you’ve made something really exciting and inventive. Is this how it tastes? What do you think?? Are you feeling the love for maple-roasted roots, like me? Tell me you feel the love. Or tell me if you don’t! What do you think?

My flatmates, they’re not convinced by meat-free dishes which don’t involve a cheese pizza or a stuffed pepper. Those are the only ones to have been approved, I believe. And I’m pretty sure they class this dinner as the worst half of a traditional Sunday roast. So they’re not joining the hype, but  the question is are you?

Roast safely this weekend! Yours,



1 comment:

  1. Hi, just to say that i gave the roasted root veg a try this week. Unlike chefbehere i am not vegi , so i followed the recipe but with a pack of Richmond Irish sausage mixed with my root veg. to serve three. The sweetness of the maple syrup mixed with sausage and root veg was an excellent mix and will be a recipe that i will be repeating. Muchos gracias chef