As I go along refining my eating habits it has become clear that I don’t tolerate raw food as easily as I do cooked food. My digestive system is sensitive and raw dietary fiber can be hard for my body to break down. I also get cold if I eat too much salad or fruit.
I absolutely agree that raw foods are super high in nutrients, enzymes, and “life force” energy so I try to find ways to eat them that are more digestible like soaking, sprouting, juicing, and blended shakes.
But since I can’t soak my salad I decided to roast it instead. I grabbed the lighter and brighter vegetables of spring like carrots, onions, and radishes and threw them on the roasting pan with the turnips, parsnips, and lemon. They held up well and the flavors concentrated nicely. I took the cold edge off the radicchio too and tossed it quickly in a sauté pan with avocado oil.
The anchovy vinaigrette is crazy delicious and compliments this dish perfectly however if fish isn’t your thing it can easily be omitted without spoiling the intensity of flavor.
Roasted Spring Roots Salad with Grilled Bitter Lettuce and Lemon Anchovy Vinaigrette
1 bunch of radishes
2 medium sized turnips
3-4 medium sized carrots
3 small red onions with stems if available or 1 large red onion quartered, peeled, intact
1 lemon quatered
1 head of Radicchio, quartered and intact at the core
Avocado oil for grilling & roasting
Juice of half a lemon
1 Tbs Apple Cider Vinegar
1 tsp Dijon mustard
½ tsp maple syrup
6 anchovy fillets – drained minced
1 small shallot – finely minced
1 clove garlic crushed
½ cup olive oil
salt & pepper to taste
Preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Don’t peel the vegetables. Instead snap off any stems from carrots and radishes, leaving the vegetables whole and intact. Wash, scrub, and dry them. Slice the carrots and parsnips at an angle into larger pieces. Halve the radishes and quarter the turnips and lemons. Slice the onions into quarters as well and peel off any loose papery skin. This should feel and look rustic. Spread everything out on a sheet pan and pour a few glugs of avocado oil over the vegetables. Sprinkle with a generous amount of sea salt and fresh pepper. Toss to coat with your hands and give the pan a shake so the pieces cook evenly. Roast for approximately 20 minutes. Check on them and adjust time to your preferences.
Make the dressing while the roots are roasting.
In a small bowl juice half a lemon, add the vinegar, a good pinch of salt, and then add the minced shallots. Swirl that around and set aside to macerate for 10 minutes. When the shallots have released some of their sweetness add mustard, garlic, maple syrup, salt and pepper. Whisk together and slowly drizzle in some olive oil. Emulsify by carefully adding oil little by little. Make sure the oil incorporates into the dressing completely before you continue to add more. Keep whisking! Once you have finished the dressing, stir in the minced anchovies.
Taste and adjust. Sometimes I add a little more maple syrup afterwards to balance out the acid. Set aside.
Heat a large sauté pan on medium high heat. Brush each quarter of radicchio with olive oil and sprinkle with salt and pepper. Place on one side in the hot pan for a few minutes then flip to other sides that need browning. Keep an eye on them! They should be nicely browned and slightly softened. This goes pretty quick.
Remove from heat and place on a big serving dish with roasted roots and drizzle with vinaigrette.
Serve with steak knives.