Weekend Recipe: Perfect Roasted Root Vegetables

 Perfect Roasted Root Vegetables
Photo: Courtesy of Cook's Illustrated

When properly roasted, root vegetables develop wonderfully complex and intense flavors, which this recipe from Cook's Illustrated captures.

We started with sweet carrots and parsnips, whose flavors are concentrated and caramelized in the heat of the oven. By properly preparing each vegetable, we can simply roast them all together in one batch. To speed up the cooking process, the vegetables are microwaved and then to jump-start the browning, we place them on a preheated baking sheet.

Perfect Roasted Root Vegetables
Serves 6


1 celery root (14 ounces), peeled
4 carrots, peeled and cut into 2 ½-inch lengths, halved or quartered lengthwise if necessary to create ½ to 1 inch in diameter
12 ounces parsnips, peeled and sliced 1 inch thick on bias
5 ounces small shallots, peeled
Kosher salt and pepper
12 ounces turnips, peeled, halved horizontally, and each half quartered
3 tablespoons vegetable oil
2 tablespoons chopped fresh parsley

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Use turnips that are roughly 2 to 3 inches in diameter. Instead of sprinkling the roasted vegetables with chopped parsley (tarragon or chives may also be substituted), try garnishing them with one of the toppings.

1. Adjust oven rack to middle position, place rimmed baking sheet on rack, and heat oven to 425 degrees. Cut celery root into 3/4-inch-thick rounds. Cut each round into 3/4-inch-thick planks about 2 1/2 inches in length.

2. Toss celery root, carrots, parsnips, and shallots with 1 teaspoon salt and with pepper to taste in large microwave-safe bowl. Cover bowl and microwave until small pieces of carrot are just pliable enough to bend, 8 to 10 minutes, stirring once halfway through microwaving. Drain vegetables well. Return vegetables to bowl, add turnips and oil, and toss to coat.

3. Working quickly, remove baking sheet from oven and carefully transfer vegetables to baking sheet; spread into even layer. Roast for 25 minutes.

4. Using thin metal spatula, stir vegetables and spread into even layer. Rotate pan and continue to roast until vegetables are golden brown and celery root is tender when pierced with tip of paring knife, 15 to 25 minutes longer. Transfer to platter, sprinkle with parsley, and serve.

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