A chill is finally in the air, which transforms what goes on our table.
Winter squash, hardy greens like kale and chard, cabbage, cauliflower and sweet potatoes are filling the markets and my recipe-testing table. The colder weather has me craving filling side dishes to go alongside juicy roasts and festive winter meals.
Baking sheets covered in cubed veggies offer a nutritious and weeknight-friendly solution or perfect holiday side dish. Cut almost any firm veggie into cubes, toss in a little olive oil and seasoning, and roast on high heat until the inside is tender and the edges are golden and caramelized. Time varies by vegetable, but most are done in the 20-30 minute range.
This sweet potato and brussels sprouts hash is filling enough to step in for less healthy options at your holiday table, but broad enough in its appeal to be eaten year-round.
Brussels sprouts and their ever-popular companion bacon are teamed up with sweet potato to make a tasty oven-roasted hash that requires just minutes of prep time to cube the veggies, all of which can be done a day in advance.
Fans of sweet potatoes love that they have a lower glycemic index than their white counterparts, while fans of bacon love that I’m not such a stickler for healthy that we can’t indulge a little here. It only takes two thick slices of bacon, boosted by a little smoked paprika and smoked turmeric (a worthy splurge if you can find it), to impart a lovely salty-smokiness on the whole dish.
Garlic cloves roast up into mellow creamy pods of flavor while tart apple cubes add a welcomed touch of acidity. The hash is meant to be a plug-and-play recipe — swap out ingredients as you wish — but this combination is exactly right, so you may find yourself making this version over and over.
ROASTED SWEET POTATO AND BRUSSELS HASH
Start to finish: 40 minutes
3/4 pound medium-sized Brussels sprouts, trimmed and halved, about 2 cups
1 medium sweet potato, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes, about 11/2 cups
1 medium Granny Smith (or other tart) apple, peeled and cut into 3/4-inch cubes, about 1 cup
1/2 cup whole garlic cloves, peeled
2 thick-cut slices bacon, cut into 1/2-inch pieces
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika
1/4 teaspoon smoked turmeric (optional)
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
Chopped fresh chives and rosemary for garnish (optional)
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
In a large bowl, mix together all the ingredients except the chives and rosemary, and stir until vegetables are coated evenly with olive oil and spices. Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper and spread the mixture out into a single layer. Bake until sweet potato, Brussels sprouts and garlic are tender and golden brown, about 30 minutes, stirring halfway through cook time. Sprinkle with fresh herbs if desired and serve.
Nutrition information per serving: 114 calories; 36 calories from fat; 4 g fat (1 g saturated; 0 g trans fats); 3 mg cholesterol; 242 mg sodium; 18 g carbohydrate; 3 g fiber; 5 g sugar; 3 g protein.