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Simple Root Vegetable Slaw

January 15, 2009

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So, as I fairly gushed about in my post earlier this week, we are indeed getting a winter share from our CSA, and it does not disappoint! Especially if – like me – you adore root vegetables. It’s like Christmas every week when I open our box; I’m amazed at the planning that must go into these shares and the fact that, in the dead of an upstate New York winter, these farmers can supply shareholders with what seems like a continuous supply of carrots, parsnips, beets, onions, garlic, potatoes, and other assorted winter veg. Often times we get some type of winter greens, like kale or baby collards, sometimes brussel sprouts still on their stalk (see the brussel sprouts in my blog header photo? Those are from our CSA…) and a variety of different winter squash, which in my mind, is one of the best parts!

this week’s share

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gnarly, knobby and beautiful

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Storing these root vegetables is admittedly easier than some of the more perishable produce we get in the spring/summer growing season. We don’t have a root cellar where we’re living right now, but a lot of the root crops store well for a few weeks, actually, in a drawer in our fridge. I keep our potatoes and winter squash out in bins in our garage, where it’s unheated but doesn’t reach freezing, and the onions and garlic in an open bin in our pantry closet, where it’s nice and dark. So far so good – things have been keeping pretty well.

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Each week, our CSA coordinator sends out a list of what’s coming in the share that week, and some ideas for cooking each. She had a great idea this past week for making a root vegetable slaw, with grated carrots, beets, turnips, etc., dressed in any kind of vinaigrette. I love this idea because a slightly acidic, crunchy, raw side dish is a perfect antidote for some of the richer braises, casseroles, and just generally warm, rich foods we tend to gravitate towards this time of year. She suggested dressing the slaw with a little lime juice, sesame oil, and salt – and that would be delicious, no doubt – but for my slaw, I used a traditional vinaigrette with extra-virgin olive oil, apple cider vinegar, whole grain dijon mustard and some local honey for just a touch of sweetness.

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You could certainly grate your veg by hand, but if you have a food processor with a shredding blade, by all means make use of it! I used carrots, parsnips, golden beets, turnips, and a rutabaga, and the shredding blade made quick work of them all. The sunset hues in the slaw are a feast for the eyes, don’t you think? Tossed with the vinaigrette and seasoned with additional sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, this is a great side dish or snack – I find it a bit addictive!

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Simple Root Vegetable Slaw

view printable recipe

Inspired by Full Plate Farm Collective’s CSA coordinator

Ingredients
2 pounds mixed root vegetables, such as turnips, carrots, parsnips, rutabagas, celery root, golden beets (if using red beets, keep them separate and mix in only at the end)
2/3 cup good quality extra-virgin olive oil
3 tablespoons apple cider vinegar
1 tablespoon minced shallot
1 tablespoon dijon mustard (I like whole-grain)
1 tablespoon honey
1/2 teaspoon sea salt, plus more to taste
freshly ground black pepper, to taste

Directions

Peel the skins off of your root vegetables and shred them either by hand or with the shredding blade of a food processor. Place all the shredded vegetables in a large bowl.

Make your vinaigrette: in a medium bowl, whisk together the minced shallot, mustard, vinegar, salt and honey. Whisking all the while, stream in the olive oil and keep whisking until you have an emulsion. Season to taste with a little more sea salt and pepper, as you like.

Pour the vinaigrette over the shredded vegetables and toss thoroughly. Taste and season with more sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, according to your taste. Let sit for 10-30 minutes to allow the flavors to blend.

10 Comments leave one →
  1. January 15, 2009 8:41 pm

    omg, i LOVE this idea🙂 and your CSA is fantastic!!! but i say this everytime i see your loot, so i’ll try and contain myself from now on!

  2. January 15, 2009 9:19 pm

    Sounds so good! I never would have thought of something like this with winter veggies.

  3. January 15, 2009 10:20 pm

    That is a beautiful winter share. I am trying to decide if I want to join a CSA this next season. I’m just wondering if I should spread my foot budget amongst all the farmer’s at my farmer’s market (Green City in Chicago) or concentrate it on one for a CSA. Hard decision.

  4. January 16, 2009 8:10 am

    I wouldn’t mind getting a box like that at all. What a great lot of produce and a lovely looking slaw.

  5. January 16, 2009 8:49 am

    It’s funny but I’ve also been making slaw quite a bit lately – it seems like such a summer picnic thing but it really is a great side to brighten up winter roasts. Love the loot in your winter CSA and am looking forward to seeing more of your rockin root vegetable recipes!

  6. January 16, 2009 1:58 pm

    My kids school has the CSA basket, and I haven’t ordered from it yet, because I’m afraid I will waste the food if I don’t know how to cook a particular veggie I am not used to. On the other hand, I want to get it to introduce me and my kids to different veggies. I think its a sign, because this is the 4th or 5th blog I’ve read about CSA, plus I posted it on my site, so I’m going to take the plunge and order it the next time around. It would kind of feel like Christmas!! Thanks for sharing!

  7. January 17, 2009 8:31 am

    I also love root veggies. I don’t know why they get such a bad name! You’re right that they store well (which is nice compared to the frantic pace I felt I had to keep this spring and summer so that veggies and fruit didn’t go to waste). Your slaw sounds wonderful- crunchy, refreshing, and sweet. That combination of whole grain dijon mustard, apple cider vinegar, and honey is one of my favorites. I bet a slightly tart apple would be a wonderful addition to this salad. Mmm.

  8. Mom permalink
    January 17, 2009 4:24 pm

    Amy, this salad was delicious and the colors were very pretty! We especially liked the vinaigrette, just the right combination of flavors! Thanks for a great idea for another way to use this season’s root vegetables. Love you!

  9. January 18, 2009 4:23 pm

    ttfn300 – thanks! and don’t worry about containing yourself…that’s my reaction every time I open my box. Never gets old🙂

    Victoria – the thought was kind of novel to me, too, but it’s definitely going to become a staple in our house. It’s a great change from roasted root vegetables (my mainstay!)

    whitneyinchicago – I’m biased, but I’d say join the CSA. I actually found myself considering the same decision, but I found that even with the CSA, I still bought various things from the other farmers at the market.

    Sylvie – thanks!

    sue bette – agreed; it’s an unexpected but really delicious idea for perking up a winter roast.

    Jennifer – it definitely feels like Christmas! You know, even if you don’t know how to cook a particular vegetable at first glance, there is a world of inspiration in the internet🙂 – I’d bet you could find ideas with either epicurious.com, foodandwine.com, or foodblogsearch.com.

    Tiffany – oh, that’s a fabulous idea! Apple would be a great, crunchy addition to the slaw.

    Mom – thanks; glad you and Dad enjoyed it! Love you too🙂

  10. February 8, 2009 7:40 am

    I made this yesterday with carrots, parsnips, and turnip and it is delicious! It’s a new fave in our family. Thank you!

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