Let’s talk dessert - a devilishly delicious taboo for anyone trying to follow any type of “diet.” But what if you could make your dessert count as something more than just sugar and starch, perhaps with some wholesome veggies? And what if you could even make it a seasonal dessert by using winter root vegetables? Even more, gather your roots from the farmers market, and you're a locavore. Well, I’d say you’re onto something there. And then I’d ask what’s for dessert.
Wonder no more. Here are 5 ways to eat root vegetables for dessert.
1. Put them in your cupcakes.
Most root vegetables, including parsnips, turnips, beets, and more make fabulous additions to cupcake batter. Check out 5 Vegetables to Put in Your Cupcake for ways to make it happen.
2. Make a crisp out of them.
It’s not your Aunt Nelly’s famous apple crisp, but it’s soon to become your famous recipe. Take any fave crisp or cobbler recipe and replace the fruit with gently steamed cubed root veggies.
3. Puree them and use in a baked custard.
Custard? Don’t freak out. It’s what you have every Thanksgiving with dessert—like sweet potato casserole. Pureed root veggies are creamed with milk, eggs and a bit of sugar, and they get baked into a sweet pudding-custard thing. Just substitute any pureed root vegetable in place of sweet potato in a standard recipe and you’re all set.
4. Candy them.
You’ve done candied orange peels or ginger before, but we’re switching it up a bit with root vegetables. Cook cubed root veggies of your choice in lots of butter (up to a stick) until slightly softened, then add just enough juice or cider to steam the veggies, along with ¼ cup to ½ cup of sugar. Cover and cook until completely softened, then reduce the liquid to a sweet syrup, and serve. Move over candied yams.
5. Add them to your brownies.
This is just about the same as adding them to your cupcake batter, but with a slightly more cosmic experience. Chocolate plus root vegetables equals divinity, so you can’t go wrong. Experiment adding grated beets or carrots to any brownie batter and get ready for veggie bliss.
Image: Nick Harris 1