Three Things to Do With Root Vegetables

It’s finally here – Fall. That magical Season where DC residents are able to breathe a sigh of relief from wearing a suit in 100 degree weather, ruining that new dress shirt in 110 degree non-air-conditioned metro break-downs, and according to my female friends, boob-sweat. Apparently this is a thing and it sounds scary. But I digress.

Fall in DC is awesome. Average highs in the 70’s and sunny, low’s in the 50’s, pumpkin beer on every tap, skinny cords of earthy tones tucked into riding boots for the ladies, and heady tweed blazer’s for the gents. Plus, Congress is out shaking babies and kissing hands back home, and little Timmy and Sally have started school again at Western Oklahoma Tech something, so there isn’t a fanny-pack or escalator left-side-stander in sight.

One of my favorite commentaries about Fall appears on the hilarious dry-humor site, McSweeny’s. In a article titled, “It’s Decorative Gourd Season MotherF—ers,” the author writes:

I don’t know about you, but I can’t wait to get my hands on some f—–g gourds and arrange them in a horn-shaped basket on my dining room table. That shit is going to look so seasonal. I’m about to head up to the attic right now to find that wicker f—-r, dust it off, and jam it with an insanely ornate assortment of shellacked vegetables. When my guests come over it’s gonna be like, BLAMMO! Check out my shellacked decorative vegetables, assholes. Guess what season it is—f——g fall. There’s a nip in the air and my house is full of mutant f—–g squash.

There’s another thing kick-ass about Fall: root vegetables. These hearty, fibrous gifts from Mother Earth are super versatile, very affordable given their size and ability to feed the masses, and good for you. I think. I don’t really know about that last part, and by the time you mix them with cheese, heavy cream, and bacon, they’re definitely not. Ok, so they’re abundant and cheap, and it’s Fall so whatever.

With all the gourds, giant root bulbs, and dirty oblong veggies being sold road-side from a pick-up truck bed, things can get a bit confusing. So here are four fabulous things to do with Fall root vegetables, AND a fall recipe contest is posted at the very bottom. Good luck!

Root Vegetable Gratin – Cheesey, Creamy, Goodness

Get your mandoline out, try to not slice off your fingertips, and add that extra belt notch, because we’re talking heavy cream, thick cheese, and thin vegetables slices ladies and gents; we’re making a gratin.

root vegetable gratin the hungry lobbyist
MMmmm, cheesy. Click the image or title for full recipe.

Root Vegetables, Meet Fryer

Perhaps the simplest preparation we’ll review today: fried root vegetable chips. Why? Because it’s Fall, have you not been paying attention? No more pumpkin beer for you. Enjoy (but don’t serve them with a vegetable dip, you wouldn’t feed bacon to a pig would you?!?!)

fried veg chips the hungry lobbyist
Crunchy veggie goodness. Click image or link for full recipe.

He Did the Mash, He Did the Root Vegetable Mash

Smashed root vegetables are like mashed potatoes but they are heartier and definitely have more texture to them. But hey, they’re fancier than mashed potatoes and they’re totes easy to make. Plus, it’s Fall, so just do it. They’re super heady, so don’t expect a smooth creamy texture here. Use a fork, not a straw.

mashed root veg the hungry lobbyist
The seasoned mix really makes them great. Click image for full recipe.

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