Friday, 30 November 2012

Roasted Root Vegetable Salad

Roasted root vegetables are a lovely accompaniment to any meal.  They are a winter favourite of mine, very simple to prepare and incredibly versatile.  I often make a large tray to ensure I have leftovers to get creative with long after the meal is over (well not too long).  I live for leftovers.  Before the original meal is finished, I'm already excited about what I can make with the leftovers.  How times have changed; from boys and clothes to leftovers and finding out sparkling water gets the red wine out of my brand new carpet.  I was also pretty thrilled when new french doors and windows were installed this week and every time I walk past I open the curtains and beam a little smile.  My new joys.  It sounds sad, but I swear, I'm fulfilled.

Anyway, back to root vegetables.  Like I said, they're easy.  I usually go with carrots, parsnip, sweet potato, red onion, beetroot (par boiled or the pre-prepared ones in the plastic packet) and whole cloves of garlic roasted right in the skins.  Swede and butternut squash or pumpkin would work nicely too.  I chop everything up to roughly the same size (large-ish chunks),  drizzle olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper.  I roast a large tray for about 45 minutes in a 200°C oven.  Use them as a side dish, in pasta dishes (if you learned anything this week it's that I love pasta!), soups and salads.

I spent last year eating a lot of salads (nothing gets you motivated to trim up a little than a wedding dress) and feeding salads to my poor brother, who had to supplement his meals with sandwiches (or he was going to fit better into my dress than I was!).  This is a salad combination I came up with when living in New Zealand and I just threw what I had in the fridge into a bowl.  Sometimes this method works and, well, sometimes it doesn't - this time it had.  Simple: rocket and spinach salad leaves, topped with roasted vegetables, topped with cottage cheese, drizzled with a balsamic glaze (or dressing).  This salad has sundried tomatoes because I happened to have some and also a side pf pork chop because according to the men, a meal isn't a meal without meat.

Any specials meals planned this weekend?  Starting your Christmas baking?  Tree decorating?  (I have to wait till the puppies go first)  I've just convinced the fella to have fish and chips from the takeaway tonight.  An English Friday must have!  I'll tell you all about it next week.  Have a great weekend everyone!

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