Crispy Smashed Root Vegetables Recipe

Photographs by Christopher Testani

crispy smashed root vegetables

Produced by Barbara Ovrutsky; text by Monica Michael Willis

"I don’t peel turnips, beets, and carrots before cooking them,” says Lanier. “When the skins and stem ends get a little burnt, they bring earthy dimension to any dish.”

Makes 4 servings

4 small turnips (about 1 pound), scrubbed
4 small beets (about 1 pound), scrubbed
8 small carrots (about ¾ pound), scrubbed
¾ cup olive oil
Coarse salt and freshly ground black pepper
1 small onion, quartered
4 cloves garlic (not peeled), crushed
1 small bunch Swiss chard (about ½ pound), stems cut into 1-inch pieces, leaves cut into 1-inch strips
3 sprigs fresh thyme
3 tablespoons unsalted butter
2 tablespoons maple syrup

1. In a large, heavy pot over medium-high heat, cover turnips, beets, and carrots with 2 inches water and bring to a boil. Reduce heat and simmer until vegetables are fork-tender, checking frequently after 15 minutes, as the vegetables will likely be ready at different times. Transfer vegetables to a paper towel–lined baking sheet and let cool.
2. Preheat oven to 200°F.Meanwhile, using the bottom of a glass or small pan, gently smash vegetables. Heat oil in a 12-inch cast-iron skillet over medium heat. Working in batches, fry the vegetables, flipping once, until brown and crisp, 5 to 7 minutes. Transfer to paper towel–lined baking sheet and season with salt and pepper; keep warm in oven while remaining vegetables cook.
3. Carefully drain off all but 2 tablespoons oil and return pan to medium heat. Add onion, garlic, and Swiss chard stems and cook, stirring occasionally, until onions and garlic are light golden brown, 2 to 3 minutes. Add Swiss chard leaves and thyme and cook, stirring frequently, until leaves are wilted, about 3 minutes. Season to taste with salt and pepper, then push greens mixture to one side of pan. Add butter to skillet; once it heats up and begins to foam, spoon it over greens mixture, tossing to combine. Arrange reserved root vegetables on a serving platter. Top with sautéed greens and spoon any remaining butter over top. Drizzle with maple syrup and serve immediately

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Crispy Smashed Root Vegetables Recipe